Did President Obama do well enough in this debate to restore any confidence that might have been lost in his campaign?

Before the second presidential debate, political observers said President Obama needed a strong showing in order to make up for a subpar performance in the first debate. Today’s Question: Did President Obama do well enough in this debate to restore any confidence that might have been lost in his campaign?

  • Duane

    The way this question is posed, and I refer to “any comments”, leads me to believe this question refuses to accept that most of the polls taken, as well as many people from his own party, felt he did not do a good job at the first debate. I do feel he did a much better job at this debate, however, I will wait for the Fact Checkers to respond before I will credit the president with an acceptable debate. I question the voracity of his statement that he had called the attack in Libya as a terrorist attack the day after it had occurred. I feel Mitt Romney did a fine job and probably gained some additional ground in his performance.

  • Duane

    Correction “any comments” should have read “any confidence”. Sorry for the typo!

  • Elaine

    Mr Romney landed some good blows when he talked about the weakness of the economy. But Mr Obama crushed him when they discussed energy, Libya, and taxes. Most importantly, Mr Obama kept his cool when he needed to, displayed righteous anger when it was appropriate, and held Mr Romney to account when he tried getting away with misrepresentations. It seems like a clear win for the president this evening.

  • Rich

    If you care about facts, Romney got nailed (twice) for having his facts wrong. (No, I’m not counting when Obama called him out. Just when the fact checkers, including the moderator, told him flat out that he was wrong about something he said.)

    If you care about “likeability” or just manners, Romney looked rude at best and bullying mostly. And seemed uninterested in actually following the rules for the event which he had agreed to.

    And he didn’t get of any really good one-liners (but Obama did).

    In short, if someone thinks it was a draw, or even close, they are Romney supporters grasping at straws. Probably it doesn’t move the polls back substantially. But the direction changes, and Romney can’t afford that.

  • Duane

    I understand that Candy Crowley has now walked back her comment that the President had called the attack in Lybia a terrorist attack the day after it had occurred, that in fact Mr Romney was right when he said that for nearly two weeks the administration had called it a spontaneous uprising. It will be interesting to see if this correction by Ms Crowley will appear in print.

  • steve the scenic

    Overall, Mr Obama had the better night, and not only because of the dead-cat bounce inevitable after the last debate. He was forceful, worked up a bit of righteous anger when needed, defended his record, called out Republican obstruction in Congress and made fair points on the vagueness of Mr Romney’s centerpiece, tax policy. His supporters will breathe easier after this one.

    Also worth noting: Mr Obama got a 3.2% bump on Intrade.

  • Clark

    No. Romney again and again took Obama to task on the horrible economy and other issues. He all but called Obama a liar, which is absolutly true.

    Is it four more years is economic disaster by a president who won’t tolerate diverse opinions or a real change to Romney who actually understands what drives the economy.

    Obama did better then the first debate but he still can’t explain how he will reduce his four years of deficit spending without cutting entitlements. He will, of course, require the approval of his boss, Nancy Pelosi.

    Mitt 2 , Obama 0

  • Richard

    Yes. The President did an excellent job of exposing the contrast between campaign Romney and debate Romney. Two totally different people. “It’s just not true.” Great line.

    Thanks to Mr. Romney, my woman will be home by 5 PM to make my dinner.

  • Gary F

    Obama did have a better showing.

    I didn’t know that Obama was such a pro-oil and pro-coal guy. I wished they would have talked about fracking too.

    I also liked it when Obama said he would outlaw “Assault rifles”(guns that look mean) but then he said that they weren’t causing the trouble in Chicago.

    The final debate, also moderated by an old, white, dinosaur liberal, will be about foreign policy. I would like to hear more about the Benghazi fiasco and cover up. I read in David Sanger’s NY Times article (it’s got to be true, right?), article yesterday that we are giving support to Al Qaeda in Syria. That should make for good discussion in the next debate.

  • Emery

    At times it appeared Mr. Romney tried to go “Biden” on President Obama. The lesson here is that only Biden can get away with being “Biden”.

  • Gary F

    Also, great article from Marc Thiessen at the Washington Post about Syria.

    Should make for a great debate!

  • James

    I now officially can’t stand Ken and Barbie, so my observations may be a bit biased.

    It seems that Mitt spent the 2 weeks between debates getting a little more plastic surgery (for him and his wife), and new haircut (for him and his wife) and yet another $5,000 suit.

    Scoring at home, I had Obama up 3-1/2 to 1/2 up to the Libya question when I had to award Obama 3 bonus points for essentially telling Romney to grow up. Then I had to take 2 points away from Romney for his obnoxious need to always get the last word. (He would be a pain to work for.)

    Then the debate went sideways for both of them and I stopped scoring.

    Obama did well enugh to re-energize the front line. Romney did badly enough to de-energize his front line. And I would guess that every woman in the US who has a pulse is having second thoughts about voting for Mitt.

    Good enough. Thank goodness!

  • James

    One more comment.

    It is painful to watch a very smart man (Romney), who definintely can do arithmetic, talk about his tax plan.

    Here is a man who has spent his entire life making logical arguments being forced to ignore logic to avoid being assasinated by the money-bags guys in his party.

    I suspect it is at least 50:50 that he will raise taxes on the rich, if elected. But he can’t and won’t say it.

  • Joberg

    No. Obama still provides no vision on how he will grow the economy other then to confiscate income.

    He had provided no clear path other then more of the same, higher taxes, more regulations, more spending and grabing power intended for congress. I just don’t see this guy getting reelected.

  • Louis

    Nice to see Romney lies actually exposed in real time thanks to the President and to the moderator! Romney, who has pandered to his radical party elsewhere and to the moderates in the debates, reveals himself to be someone that yearns to add “President” to his resume but has no core beliefs. And “binders full of women”? What sort of mind thinks that way?

  • GregX

    Obama held the presidential ground and Romney was back to being the guy chipping around the corners trying to “catch” the president off-guard. Romney stuck in there – but the sails aren’t as full as they were. He’s still got the “details” problem. To many Romney promises to have a plan – and nothing to show for it.

  • Sheri

    Yes. President Obama was in short: Presindential during the debate: knowledgeable, focused, hard working, agenda-setting and energetic. A leader.

  • Sheri

    A note on Gov. Romney:

    The Gov. was asked how he differed from President Bush. The answers I would have liked to have liked to have heard: A concern for human rights,economic justice, the environment and civil rights.

  • Jim G

    Yes. Obama was focused and was willing to mix-it-up. The Obama of 2008 is back and thankfully has learned from the first debate that Romney will say anything to get elected. His mistake last time was to expect Romney to fight fair and not lie. This debate he was ready, calling out the lies as untrue.

    Romney sunk Candy Crowley with two broadsides when he continued to talk over her, demanding the last word. That’s the very definition of rudeness and illustrates how Romney will continue to rundown and ignore women and their issues. Now he’s for contraception availability when before he was against it in the Republican Primaries. I don’t believe it. I do have to complement Romney as a Flimflam artist, but Obama was willing and able to counter his funny money accounting techniques as well. His performance reassured me that “He’s back.”

  • Kurt Fleccus

    I feel better about voting for Obama again, and more encouraged that he will win re-election. I was very deflated following his zombie-like performance in the first debate.

  • Steve the Cynic

    The winner of any candidates’ debate is the one who is best able to manipulate the confirmation bias of nominal independents who lean their way.

  • Gordon near Two Harbors

    The bottom line is: What kind of idiot would change there opinion on the President, or his challenger, based on their “performance” in a single debate?

    It’s what they do or say over a long period of time that matters.

  • Regnar James

    I have zero confidence in the big “O”.

    Never have, never will.

    I’m surprised he did not bow down to Mitty,,, like he has done to every other person he meets.


  • Wally

    I am less inclined to vote for either. Romney tries to prove how much of a Democrat he is, always defending bankrupt programs like MediDon’tCare and Socialistic InSecurity.

    Abortion is entrenched in this country, and no Republican president has the backbone to make it go away. But Obama fearmongered on the threat to women’s health, spending an inordinate amount of time pandering to his feminista pals at Planned Parenthood (the leading abortionists in the land).

    Both sucked up to Israel. Both prostituted themselves at the altar of the false religion of higher education.

    (I was working last night, trying to listen on MPR, and didn’t catch it all, so if I put some words in their mouths, vis-a-vis last night, they have said them recently.)

  • Rich in Duluth

    Obama did just fine in the debate, but it doesn’t matter. The policies are the important thing, not debate performance. If these guys would present the facts with supporting information, we might learn something. This is just entertainment.

  • Linda in Plymouth

    Did the debate restore any confidence ?

    Well, Obama parsed words to avoid admitting his Intelligence and State Dept knew within 24 hrs or sooner ( finally released security tapes and drone film) that there was no_ NO_ mobs reacting to a film clip no one saw, being the cause of the Ambassador’s murder. 14 days later, after Obama send out UN ambassador Rice to continue to give a false story to the public about some stupid You Tube clip as the cause…THIS is worse than Watergate with Nixon. Four dead on 9/11/2012 and the day after, Obama is NOT addressing the nation calling it what it was, Islamic radical terrorists or that the consulate was attacked twice in the preceding months or that Hillary refused Marine guards as are posted at other sites, instead she allows $4.00 per hour Libyan security hacks and orders them not to carry live ammunition( because it would look bad_ just as she didn’t allow barbed wire defense_ it would LOOK BAD. Come on_ confidence in a President who is absent, unless we count the over 100 rounds of golf he has done as being on the job? He breaks every promise, throws Hillary under the bus and then continued for 14 days to avoid coming clean. He did not answer at the debate, the Why didn’t he supposedly know and why did he have his people go on talk shows just as HE too, did with The View!

    Community Organizers have NO experience and no ability to be a Leader_ Obama’s policies have not changed our bottomed out economy, but he gains 5 million jobs but loses over 5 million jobs, kills Gulf Oil drilling for a year under false pretenses and kills another 10,000 jobs, gives EPA excessive unaccountable powers to attack small and large business, as such killing more jobs, and worse is that I don’t see the media talking about this new discovery: Obama started his Presidency with a net value of $1.2 million ( book sales) Then today we find out his net worth has climbed to 12 million. How did he make nearly $3 million each year without working? Money from stock investments does not allow for a doubling every year of value unless one has stoked the insider game..Hmm_ Solyndra and other Green energy grants to the tune of $90 billion of YOUR tax dollars..think of how many could have been better served, or even NOT used in order to lower what he signed into law to create another $5 trillion in debt over just 3.5 years!! Do the math? Who will pay your entitlements when the wealthy have been taxed out of business or as we see in England, millionairs immigrate to less hostile countries taking their companies and wealth with them.

    Only un informed or ignorant far Left Progressives would still have_ any_ confidence in Obama, Obama the inexperienced, Marxist mentored grassroots organizer that was spoon fed and run by the nose by his top adviser, the corrupt Valerie Jarret. Minnesotan women are not that stupid to be fooled again. Obama said gasoline prices were low when the economy was collapsing in 2008. Ok, so then if we had 10% growth and 4 % unemployment, gasoline prices would be at $25.00 a gallon? Obama has NO clue about how an economy works..after all, he NEVER led a company, never hired or created a private job, in short_ simply useless as a potential world leader. Us women do NOT need free government provided birth control and most of us are against aborting babies and only a few irresponsible ones are for using abortion for birth control vs using the pill. This happens every day and Planned abortion Parenthood does their abortion job, no wonder black abortions are at an all time high.

  • Linda in Plymouth

    Many MN democrats have lost confidence in Obama since he covered up the Benghazi scandal and used Executive Order to protect Attorney Genreral Holder from further testifying on their Fast and Furious gun running operation, used to bolster UN support for a UN arms sales treaty…shameful…Obama has been shameful.

  • carol

    The President edged the Govenor, but not by as much as I would have liked. Romney repeated himself a lot – the same old lines – does he really think we are dumb enough to believe that all the problems we have were created in the last four years???? That Republican assertion is starting to make me mad; if there had been a McCain in the White House we would be in the same shape or worse! If anyone wants to know what the facts REALLY are they should read Hendrick Smith’s book, “Who Stole the American Dream” – he was on MPR a week ago and I was wishing that both candidates had read it prior to any debates. I almost ordered it for them and sent it with the admonition, “READ THIS!!” Oh well, that’s the English teacher in me….=)

  • Jamie

    The thing that bothers me about these debates is the news coverage. After the first debate, and then in the run-up to the second, everyone (including public radio) kept reporting on Obama’s “lackluster performance” in the first, and how Romney had done so remarkably well, even declaring him “the winner.” Well, you can only say that if you believe all the lies that Romney told! You shouldn’t be declared the “winner” of a presidential debate because you were a more aggressive bully and a liar, even if a lot of people (Republicans) think those are admirable qualities.

    I’m not saying that Obama’s performance in the first was good. But if we’re going to say that Romney did really well, I’ve got to really wonder about whether we value the truth. Obama did do a LOT better last night. He held Romney’s feet to the fire in the way he should have done during the first debate. I read that Obama said he didn’t want to keep pointing out Romney’s “misstatements” (a.k.a. lies) in the first because it would have been too repetitive. I’m glad he wasn’t so concerned about that last night. Oh, and I never lost confidence in the fact that Obama would be a MUCH MUCH better president than Romney would be.

  • Jamie

    Speak for yourself, Linda in Plymouth. And don’t even try to convince us that you’re a Democrat.

    Obama, et al. said the attack on the embassy in Lybia was a response to that video because that’s what they were first told. When they learned otherwise, they reported that they knew differently now. It wasn’t a “scandal” unless you consider the fact of Republicans in Congress cutting the budget for security at our embassies is a scandal.

    Also, the “Fast and Furious” business was begun in the Bush administration, and the other myths about that situation have been debunked.

    I think you’re believing too many of those mass e-mailings that proclaim all kinds of ridiculous lies about the Obama administration (many started by lying Republicans in Congress), but that have been roundly debunked by factcheckers and Snopes.com and others.

  • jockamo


    Looks like the Kool-aid gulpers have arrived.


  • David

    I’m leaning Libertarian than Green.

    I’d not vote either R or D.

    I might as we vote Grass Roots.

  • Steve the Cynic

    What’s a “Kool-aid gulper”? Anyone who disagrees with you?

  • Leonard

    # to the one who wrote, “Obama, et al. said the attack on the embassy in Lybia was a response to that video because that’s what they were first told. When they learned otherwise, they reported that they knew differently now. It wasn’t a “scandal” unless you consider the fact of Republicans in Congress cutting the budget for security at our embassies is a scandal.}

    Seriously? Our Intelligence Community doesn’t keep facts from the Chief…maybe ask NPR to explain this to you…its a cover up because the attack makes Obama’s policies transparently failed. Go see CNN and FOX news and even the liberal AP news coverage..duoh_ Kool aid drinker you are, sadly true.

  • Lance

    FYI – while there was a similar program to Fast & Furious under the Bush administration, it was shut down prior to Obama taking office; it was done in close cooperation with the Mexican government; the guns were tracked; and arrests were made.

    Contrast that to Fast & Furious – This was a new program started under the Obama administration; there was no communication/cooperation with the Mexican government; the guns were simply allowed to walk without tracking; no arrests were made.

  • Jamie

    I’m not by any means a Kool-Aid drinker, jockamo and Leonard. I disagree plenty with what Obama and Democrats in general are about. But I’m a grown-up, so I know that I have to vote for and support someone whose values and beliefs and desires for our country are closest to my own. Romney is a proven liar — there are even a couple websites devoted to his lies (probably MORE than a couple), and he’s a plutocrat who would hand over the country to his wealthy cronies if he could, leaving the rest of us to minimum-wage jobs at best. He’s good at marketing; that’s the best thing one can say about him (a dubious compliment, of course).

    I don’t have time to find the article that debunks all the crap Republicans are pushing about Fast and Furious, but it’s there via Google, I’m sure. Republicans in Congress couldn’t care less about the well-being of our country; they’ve proven that time and time again. They’ve used both Fast & Furious and the Lybia situation for no other reason than to try to damage Obama’s re-election prospects, lying and spinning the whole time.

    And even if what they say about those situations were true (NOT), they would be miniscule mistakes compared with the corrupt, incompetent Bush administration who cost us thousands of lives and billions of dollars unnecessarily.

  • Jamie

    “I’m leaning Libertarian than Green [sic]… I’d not vote either R or D.” – David

    David, please read my first paragraph below about being a grown-up. People who wasted their votes on Ralph Nader delivered George W Bush to the White House. He gave us unnecessary costly war, all kinds of corruption, incompetence, and cronyism, and a couple of extremist Supreme Court justices (who in turn have continually ruled against regular people in favor of corporations), who will be there for a very, very long time.

  • inuit

    No one ever wasted their vote by voting for Ralph Nader. When you vote for the person you think is best, your vote is never wasted.

    The two extremist Supreme Court justices were appointed by Barack Obama. Kagan and Sotomayor. You can’t get much more extreme than those two kuku birds.

    The Democrats have been practicing, and perfecting, cronyism for 180 years. They are experts at it. The stealing of General Motors from its owners and giving the company to the Union, which was forceably done by the Democrats under Obama, is the Crown Jewel of cronyism.

    The Democrats have also spent the last 180 years perfecting corruption in government. It is their stock in trade, their way of life. Nothing is more important to the Democrats than living high on the hog by stealing as much of the middle class money as possible and putting it in their own pockets, and the pockets of their masters, the extremely wealthy. It is what they do. It is what they are. The money of the middle class is the ATM card of the Democrats.

    Democrats are well advised to never get in a contest about which Party has had the most crooks. The Democrats have. By far. It isn’t even close.