1. Best thing I’ve seen on Mitt Romney and the Republicans today is an excellent post by Ed Kilgore, who notes that it’s in the interest of conservatives for everyone to have the (false) impression that Romney is campaigning as a moderate — so that they can blame his loss on that supposed moderation.
2. Nice point by Steve Benen: Republicans have built up Bill Clinton (and for that matter Hillary Clinton too) over the last years, only to have Clinton out there active on the campaign trail. They should have stuck to Kennedy and Truman. Also see Jed Lewison on this.
3. Paul Waldman on Libya and “pseudo-issues.”
4. Someone actually got Romney to answer a question about medical marijuana; Peter Suderman reports.
5. “Romney still isn’t willing to confront Bush-era Republican failures because he agreed with virtually everything Bush did while in office.” That’s Dan Larison, analyzing Romney’s debate answer.
6. Just how lazy is Mitt Romney’s economic team? Brad DeLong notes how easy it would be to put together a plausible justification for Romney’s 12 million jobs number. DeLong thinks that it reveals something about Romney’s managerial incompetence. I think it’s that there’s little incentive for the Romney campaign to come up a reasonable rationale for the plan, because the Republican-aligned partisan press will automatically praise the plan, whatever is in it.
7. How about the other guy in the presidential election? Ezra Klein thinks about the fiscal cliff and Barack Obama’s plans for a second term.
8. Kevin Drum takes us through the fiscal cliff scenarios.
9. “How to make the administration sound like it lied in Libya: Edit the tape!” Dave Weigel reports on how Crossroads is flat-out lying with video.
10: Benjy Sarlin has another example of Obama pivoting hard into taking ownership of the recovery. — gs
11. Republican Maine Senate candidate claims that he’s the only victim of negative ads; debate audience erupts in laughter. Amy Fried reports.
12. Mark Blumenthal on how the second debate might affect the polls.
13. Dinesh D’Souza is out at the evangelist college where he’d been president. David Sessions reports.
14. Good Seth Masket post on polarization without old-time party bosses.
Update: New NBC/WSJ numbers: Obama leads among likely voters in Wisconsin by 51-45; and in Iowa by 51-43. More on this tomorrow. — gs