I feel that Andrew Rosenthal’s article in the Opinion Section of the New York Times titled, simply, “The First Presidential Debate” is a very accurate and to the point. He does not go into detail about what President Obama and Mitt Romney said policy wise, rather how they both appeared on stage, and what they could have done.
He describes how Obama acted unenthused and unchallenging. Obama had many opportunities to take the debate out of Romney’s hands. He could have stuck up for his actions as his past four years as President, but did not seemed driven enough to do so. At the end of the debate, it was clear Obama missed his chance of standing out.
Compared to Obama, Romney acted how he should have acted. He was clear, personable and almost presidential. The debate could have gone terribly wrong for Romney. He had never been in a debate against Obama, he could have been uptight and Obama could have questioned him about his ideas. Instead, he talked clearly and (almost) candidly. The GOP, at least for a while, can breathe just a little.
The point of Rosenthal’s article was to point out what Romney did, what Obama could have done and how they each could have positioned themselves as better candidates. The debate between the differences and similarities of Obama and Romney’s policies lead back to one question: what will the next four years really be like?