Kurt_W wrote:Gosh, I don't know. You yourself seem to have no problem at all saying that Obama "lost" the first debate ... But somehow when it comes to the other debates, the concept of "winning" or "losing" gets all postmodern-y.
I think we're talking about different things, I'll try to explain.
Not wanting to be ungracious, if your assertion is that Obama scored more points in the 2nd/3rd debates, I can see where that's a valid perception. If we're going to look at it another way and be subjective, yes Obama won for liberals and Romney won for conservatives. Each candidate's arguments are disqualified by our subjective ideology; because we think ours is right, the other guy lost. Maybe for Democrats, beyond subjectivity they see it as, Obama was more aggressive *and* they agree with him, so he won.
I look at it as: who gained the most ground with voters? So I said,
I would characterize Obama as losing the second two debates in the tactical sense. Instead of Romney having to work to raise himself to the stature of the president, the president threw his advantage away on purpose to try to lower them both. It's irrelevant to me how "low" Mitt Romney may be in the mind of the average lefty; but it's significant to me to note that, however low that may be, the president (at liberals' behest) lowered himself right down there. In what way that's meant to improve the prospects of his campaign, I'd be glad to hear.
If I say he lost it in the tactical sense that doesn't mean I'm saying he lost it in the frame of winning or losing the debate itself; rather, losing it in the sense of failing to acheive what this sort of debate is actually meant to accomplish with the electorate. I'm saying, if it was 'who scored the most points' that generated votes, the polls should be back where they were after the DNC.
Romney's strategy was to take the punchy Obama performance they knew was coming in the last two debates and turn it to his positional advantage.
So he let Obama "come after him," which only lowered the president. Barack spent the last two debates trying to inflict damage on the challenger; the challenger spent the last two debates making a huge lunge to the middle
, playing tit for tat with a shrinking POTUS but driving home the point that he's a moderate who will work with Democrats and Republicans; and because of the antagonistic position assumed by the incumbent he did so while easily seeming just as presidential as Obama. A tactical victory in the game of the election.