Presidential Debate #2


The second of three Presidential debates takes place tonight, at Hofstra University in Hempstead, Long Island.  Despite the President’s lackluster performance in the first debate, Romney still needs to win this one more than the President.  Obama supporters did not abandon him simply because of one debate and they won’t do so even if he loses this one.  Romney on the other hand, needs to keep the momentum, if he is going to have a serious shot at winning the White House.  Until debate number one, the Romney-Ryan ticket was not generating enthusiasm.  After debate one and after the VP debate, that changed.  The campaign has new life.  Romney needs to hold on to that, as we are only three weeks from election day.  A word of advice to the President: if he intends on coming out overly aggressive, it will appear as if he is overcompensating for his poor performance in the first debate.  If he stays calm and does what he does best, communicate to the American people, he will fare far better.  He needs to do a better job of countering Romney, something he did not do effectively.  He should call out Romney on all of his disputed claims, including healthcare and taxes and Romney better be prepared to cogently answer those questions.  This debate will take the form of a town hall meeting, in which citizens, (supposedly undecided voters, chosen by Gallup) ask questions on domestic and foreign issues.  The candidates will each have two minutes to respond and an additional minute for discussion.  This format certainly seems to favor the President as the better communicator.  It allows him show off his personality as well as discuss his successes and vision for the next four years.  However, since Romney was well schooled, there’s no reason to believe he won’t be as well prepared for this debate.  Generally speaking, debates don’t mean much but as evidence of the boost in the polls immediately following the debate for Romney, there is a lot riding on this.  The President has his electoral votes and a clear path to victory.  What matters now for Romney is simple, he needs to wrestle away Ohio, Florida, Michigan or Pennsylvania, if he is to have any shot at winning on November 6.  These four states account for 83 electoral votes, over 30% of the 270  needed to win the election.  If Romney wins Florida and two of the other three, he will win the election.  Whatever happens on Tuesday night, it won’t be dull.  Expect both men to come out more aggressively and may the best man win.

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