Did the race fundamentally change last week? Mitt Romney foes and some supporters insist it has not.
Jan Sobiesko made the case for the status quo: “Well has he recovered from the 47% remark? I don’t see any poll numbers that show that has happened. He now says he was wrong to have made the remarks. Will that work? What will his base’s reaction be to he act of asking for forgiveness? The 47% remark’s wound is just starting to fester. Will it heal before the election? I doubt it. He won the first debate on style and flash but the deal isn’t closed yet. There was no final sale.”
On the other side of the divide, many readers saw the first debate as very consequential. Eddiehaskell argues, “The debate will have the most effect. Number one it showed Mitt Romney as a competent person with total command of the facts. Number two he showed he has a plan for the future. Most importantly it exposed Barack Obama for being the obviously lesser qualified candidate and weak when on the same stage as Mitt Romney. The excuse that he did not prepare hard enough is a feeble excuse since he has had 4 years to prepare. The debates squashed the confidence the democrats had in Obama and sent most independents to Romney. In a word it was devastating for Obama.”
With a few days’ hindsight, it does appear the race has shifted in Romney’s favor. He has broken through the media filter, boosted his base and presented his agenda. But the tide can turn just as easily. Romney must string more than a good day or two together, acquit himself well in two more debates and avoid game-changing gaffes.
But, for the first time, that all seems entirely possible.