Archived Story

Great debate good for our nation

Published 9:35am Friday, October 12, 2012

Last week, the first presidential debate of 2012 was held in Colorado, and given the reality of a close presidential election, Colorado was an excellent choice with its evenly divided voter base.

Colorado is a “swing state” in November, and every event like the debate Wednesday night can influence the outcome of who wins the electoral votes of the state.

Mitt Romney had a great debate and, on style alone, dominated the 90 minute exchange showing wit, energy and detailed knowledge that will re-energize his campaign and Republicans across the nation.

And that is good for America. It is very good for America.

Before Wednesday night the Romney campaign was looking like the intermission in a bad movie with folks heading for the exits before the final curtain came down.

Candidates lower on the ticket were beginning to distance themselves from the top of the ticket, and fundraisers, always tied to trends, was looking to invest in other elections than the presidential race.

It would not be a stretch to suggest that, had Romney not done so well in this first debate, there would have been a good many empty seats in the Romney theatre before November.

But all of that changed this week and the Romney campaign is back in the race and looking like it is more than ready to make a run for a competitive finish.

What makes this good for America is that, political junkies aside, Americans do not get energized for elections until September or October. If the perception is that the outcome is already largely determined, then the attention of voters turns to other things.

Romney has, by his “who is that guy” performance this week, perhaps started on a path to making the race more competitive and more informative for voters.

Hopefully the coming three debates will now capture and hold larger and larger audiences as the theatre of combat between two men who would be president is played out by themselves and their ticket mates in the weeks ahead.

If so the end result will be an America more informed about the differences in this campaign between the parties and why this election really is a choice that may impact the nation for generations.

The shift in the Republican Party over the last three decades has been the major political impact of this period of American politics. The Republican Party of today would reject the ideas of Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George Bush as too liberal and too compassionate.

The Democratic Party has remained impervious to change and has made little attempt to reach out to would-be moderates who are fiscally conservative or socially moderate.

And that brings us to this presidential election.

Mitt Romney had a great advantage beyond style this week in the debates. His plans have remained nebulous at best, and so defending them was as simple as saying “that’s not in my plan” or “that’s in my plan” without ever showing any plan.

President Obama had no such luxury, tied to his programs by his responsibilities as president.

So Romney had nothing to defend and was able to argue to be for all things good and against all things bad simply by claiming that was in his mostly invisible policy.

To voters that means you cannot simply watch the debates to determine your vote, for debates show a great deal more about style and mental agility than they show about actual governing policy.

Where the candidates argue over issues voters need to do their own research to find the truth of those arguments, using fact check sites where possible.

But that too is good for America as informed voters make smart decisions.

As for President Obama in the debate last week, the best thing that can be said is as a debater his is a great stump speech speaker.

The President might want to prepare a good deal more before facing Mr. Romney again.

 

Jim Crawford is a retired educator and political enthusiast living here in the Tri-State.

 

  • mikehaney

    Crawford–As for President Obama in the debate last week, the best thing that can be said is as a debater his is a great stump speech speaker.
    =================
    True, if you have the intelligence of a 10 year old and like “B” movies.

    (Report comment)

  • mikehaney

    Crawford–Where the candidates argue over issues voters need to do their own research to find the truth of those arguments, using fact check sites where possible.
    ————————————
    I did my research in 2007 thru Oct. 2012. Comes out the same.
    Obama is still a socialist and is still planning to bankrupt our country if he makes it past november.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    Come on keta! help me with my spelling. God knows I need it.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    “fool or fools”? I have never meet a “fool”. I have met and associated with individuals who disagree with my thoughts and opinions but I have never considered them foolish. The fact of the matter is, oftentimes, I have benefited from their insight.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    As a PS: I feel ObamaCare is an advancement in Health Care reform. However, there are bugs to be worked out and improvements to be made, such as those regarding freedom of conscience concerning religious beliefs.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    The Democratic Party, even with it’s weakness’s on three issues, Abortion, Same Sex Marriage and Freedom Of Conscience (lack of) in ObamaCare is still superior and more representative of the Middle Class and Less Fortunate members of our society than the Republican Party. The Republican Party is definitely not the standard bearer of the American dream. Past history and current events demonstrate this. To place the Democratic Party back on it’s pedestal as the defender and protector of the people, reform is in order.

    (Report comment)

    • mikehaney

      Good plan Mick–with abortion and same sex marriage, the less fortunate and the democratic party will implode to zero.
      Meantime–all registered dems support abortion,same sex marriage and attacking freedom of religion.

      (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    Jim Crawford; Did you see where the distinguished Ex-Senator from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania died today? I place Arlen Specter on the same level as Bob Byrd, (almost) two of the greatest statesmen this country has seen. May he rest in peace.

    (Report comment)

  • mikehaney

    And a fool remains a democrat when all evidence that the democratic party, as in the past, no longer exists.

    (Report comment)

    • Noesis

      Speaking of fools… there’s a couple of people who have been awfully quiet ever since Obambi got whooped in the debate…

      (Report comment)

  • mikehaney

    Ryan vs Biden– A wise man, if he were to contend with the foolish, whether in anger or in laughter, would find no rest; proverbs 29.9
    Paul Ryan handled himself well during his debate with a fool.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    Noesis; In answer to your question, whats your feelings on Hillary? I do not have any admiration for President Obama or anyone associated with his administration. The Democratic Party has sunk to the level of the Republican Party, without due concern for all members of society. It boils down to the lessor of two evils. At the present time, I feel that is the Republican Party and it’s candidates.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    “Great debate good for our nation” Really?, or is it entertainment at it’s height? The Gladiatorial contests in the Colosseum were held in order to redirect peoples minds and thoughts. Are the same tactics being used today? It is comfortable to set back with a beer or soda and a can of peanuts or a bag of popcorn and watch and listen to somebody talk and put on an act. It requires more effort to do a little research and look into the facts as presented by an individuals actions, voting record or legislation endorsed and signed. Are we as easily deceived as our Roman counterparts? I think so.

    (Report comment)

  • mickakers

    Jim; Talk is cheap and meaningless, actions speak. The actions of President Obama and the Democratic Party are examples of moral decay. They have placed themselves in a questionable position when it comes to representing the less fortunate and weaker members of our society. In other words, they are no better, or maybe even worse, than their adversaries in the Republican Party. Does it boil down to the lessor of two evils? I think so.

    (Report comment)

  • Noesis

    The Republican Party of today would reject the ideas of Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George Bush as too liberal and too compassionate.
    ———————————

    And the democrats of today would reject the ideas of Bill Clinton as to conservative and mean. Can you imagine the democrats of today cutting the number of people who are on welfare or lowering taxes on dividends to support job creation like Clinton did?

    Democrats are now down to two debates. Last night’s debate did not help democrats with independents or the undecided voters. Somebody in the Obama camp should have told Biden that his fake looks of disbelief/smiles and clown faces should have happened after Ryan actually said something. Biden must have believed that he got style points from his democratic base for every time he interrupted Ryan. What was the interruption count? Somewhere between 80-100 times?

    And did Biden was throwing out lies all night long:

    “We weren’t told they wanted more security there. We did not know they wanted more security.”

    — Biden, speaking of the U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya

    Biden’s bold statement was directly contradicted by State Department officials just this week, in testimony before a congressional panel and in unclassified cables released by a congressional committee.

    “The congressman here cut embassy security in his budget by $300 million below what we asked for.”
    —-
    Blatant lie. There were no cuts to the security budget. There as a general 19% cut to discretionary spending.

    “They got caught with their hands in the cookie jar, turning Medicare into a piggybank for Obamacare.”

    — Ryan

    “What we did is, we saved $716 billion and put it back, applied it to Medicare.”

    — Biden

    Biden is completely wrong when he says the money was applied to Medicare. In fact, the anticipated savings from Medicare were used to help offset some of the anticipated costs of expanding health care for all Americans, as Ryan said.

    (Report comment)

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