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Debate transcript here.
President Obama called out Mitt Romney's lies and deceptions last night in convincing fashion...often leaving the former governor reaching for his canned campaign talking points to try to run out the question clock. It wasn't pretty for the GOP nominee who has built his entire campaign on very little truth or substance.
Whether it was the automaker bailout....
Obama...."what Governor Romney said just isn't true. He wanted to take them into bankruptcy without providing them any way to stay open."....."the executives at GM and Chrysler,...they'll tell you his prescription wasn't going to work."
...or Mr. Romney's 5 point plan...
Obama...."And Governor Romney's says he's got a five-point plan? Governor Romney doesn't have a five-point plan. He has a one-point plan. And that plan is to make sure that folks at the top play by a different set of rules. That's been his philosophy in the private sector, that's been his philosophy as governor, that's been his philosophy as a presidential candidate."
..or Mr. Romney's numbers on oil, gas and coal production...
Obama..."very little of what Governor Romney just said is true. We've opened up public lands. We're actually drilling more on public lands than in the previous administration."
Obama...."...Governor Romney just said, you know he wants to help those young people too, but during the Republican primary, he said, "I will veto the DREAM Act", that would allow these young people to have access." His main strategy during the Republican primary was to say, "We're going to encourage self-deportation." Making life so miserable on folks that they'll leave. He called the Arizona law a model for the nation."
It went on like that all evening. Often cornered by his own previous deceptive statements or outright lies on a topic....Mr. Romney defaulted to his committed-to-memory talking points of distraction....."23 million REALLY unemployed", "median income down $4300 a family", "47 million people on food stamps"....
However, it was towards the last third of the debate, when Benghazi, Libya became the topic where Mr. Romney's Foxian-world of make believe clearly clashed with reality. It was Romney's worst moment.
Romney...."There were many days that passed before we knew whether this was a spontaneous demonstration, or actually whether it was a terrorist attack. And there was no demonstration involved. It was a terrorist attack and it took a long time for that to be told to the American people. Whether there was some misleading, or instead whether we just didn't know what happened, you have to ask yourself why didn't we know five days later when the ambassador to the United Nations went on TV to say that this was a demonstration."
Obama..."The day after the attack, governor, I stood in the Rose Garden and I told the American people in the world that we are going to find out exactly what happened. That this was an act of terror and I also said that we're going to hunt down those who committed this crime."
Romney...."I -- I think interesting the president just said something which -- which is that on the day after the attack he went into the Rose Garden and said that this was an act of terror."
Obama..."That's what I said."
Romney..."You said in the Rose Garden the day after the attack, it was an act of terror. It was not a spontaneous demonstration, is that what you're saying?
Obama..."Please proceed governor."
Romney..."I want to make sure we get that for the record because it took the president 14 days before he called the attack in Benghazi an act of terror."
Obama...."Get the transcript."
Candy Crowley..."...he did call it an act of terror."
Foxian make-shite-up-on-the-fly......meet.....reality. In spite of the faux-narrative that Darrell Issa, Fox, and the reality-denying conservative media have been slinging about Benghazi.....the fact is that President Obama, on September 12th in the Rose Garden said this...
"No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for. Today we mourn four more Americans who represent the very best of the United States of America. We will not waver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act. And make no mistake, justice will be done."
Romney thought he had hit the gotcha lottery when President Obama stated in the debate that he had called the September 11 Benghazi violence an "act of terror" as early as September 12th. Romney acted cocky in his framing of the same question a couple of times, taunting Obama.....but Romney's suit was empty. He had no real idea what he was talking about.....and Candy Crowley had to finally bring Mr. Romney's most embarrassing moment to a merciful end by telling the former governor....'yeah, governor, the president DID say that.'
Finally....Obama's sharpest moment came when the question to Mr. Romney was "how would you be different from George W. Bush?" To his credit, Mr. Romney pointed out that, unlike Bush, he would balance the budget, crack down on China, and focus on small business rather than large business.
But then Obama had his turn.....and he was shrewd enough to explain how Mr. Romney was truly unlike Bush....
"You know, there are some things where Governor Romney is different from George Bush. George Bush didn't propose turning Medicare into a voucher. George Bush embraced comprehensive immigration reform. He didn't call for self-deportation. George Bush never suggested that we eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood, so there are differences between Governor Romney and George Bush, but they're not on economic policy."
That one had to have left a mark.
All in all.....a rather strong showing by President Obama and a weak, and sometimes embarrassing, event for Mr. Romney. As usual, the Villagers will distort and contort what happened last night....but to me, Obama was the clear winner.