17 Oct '12, 3pm

To what extent is the public listening to Obama? | Power Line

It’s a commonplace that when a challenger debates an incumbent president, the challenger gains in stature if he hangs in there effectively with the president. Mitt Romney certainly met that standard last night. If this had been the first debate, the story would be that, regardless of who had the better of it on this or that point, Romney gained by hanging in there with Obama. But of course, Romney had already trounced the president in the first debate. Thus, Romney didn’t gain by just hanging in there last night. If anything, it’s possible that Obama gained slightly by keeping up with Romney. There’s another dynamic, though, that may operate in at least some debates involving an incumbent. After four years, the public has heard the president speak often. Its reaction to his words tends to be fixed. That reaction may be positive, neutral, or negative, but it’s unlikely to c...

Full article: http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/10/to-what-ext...

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