Post debate Oct 3, 2012- While Mitt Romney gathers his notes, the reality of the past 90 debate minutes sinks into Michelle and Barack Obama as they prepare to leave the stage. University of Denver, CO
(Photo – David Goldmann:AP)
What a difference 90 minutes makes!
It was a Rocky Mountain mauling in the mile-high city last night.
If you missed Mitt Romney’s masterful message to the American people during his first presidential debate between himself and President Obama in Denver, Colorado, here it is:
Be sure to check out and share debate reviews from MRC contributors:
The magnificent lady in red, Ann Romney, waves to a roaring crowd prior to delivering her speech at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida. August 28, 2012 (Photo – Harry E. Waker)
Wow! Offff the charts!
Amid deafening applause, the lady in red, Ann Romney, walked on stage last night at the Republican National Convention and RAISED THE ROOF! Her electrifying, heartfelt speech elicited immediate glowing reviews. Here’s just a sample:
NBC’s Brian Williams: “A Sweeping Job…” WILLIAMS: “Emphasis on well-delivered. That was a sweeping job at that speech.” (NBC, 8/28/12)man
CBS’s Bob Schieffer: “Wow. … That Was One Heck Of A Speech.” SCHIEFFER: “Wow. Just what you said, that was a speech. … That was a fine speech. She took her own life, she took personal anecdotes and welded it into a presentation that made the point she wanted to make. … That was one heck of a speech.” (CBS, 8/28/12)
ABC’s George Stephanopoulos: “A Love Letter To America’s Moms.” STEPHANOPOULOS: “She said her theme was love. It was a love letter to Mitt Romney, to be sure. But also a love letter to America’s moms. And that is how she started, Matt Dowd, basically telling all those moms out there, I feel your pain.” (ABC, 8/28/12)
NBC’s Tom Brokaw: “Mrs. Romney Made A Very Strong Case, Not Just For Her Husband But Also For Why He Ought To Be President.” (NBC, 8/28/12)
CNN’s David Gergen: “In 2004, Barack Obama Was Born As A National Star At The Democratic Convention. Tonight It Was Ann Romney’s Turn.” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
Fox News’ Brit Hume: “I Think That Was The Single Most Effective Political Speech I’ve Ever Heard Given By A Political Wife.” (Fox News, 8/28/12)
The Atlantic’s Garance Franke-Ruta: “I’m Not Sure I’ve Seen Better From A Potential First Lady.” “Ann Romney is giving a great speech. I’m not sure I’ve seen better from a potential first lady.” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
Tampa Bay Times’ Alex Leary: “Projected Confidence And Warmth…” “The 63-year-old Mrs. Romney — with her five sons watching from a box in the Tampa Bay Times Forum — projected confidence and warmth, attributes that have made her a valuable presence on the campaign trail.” (Tampa Bay Times, 8/28/12)
USA Today’s David Jackson: “A Thunderous Ovation…” “Ann Romney appears on stage to a thunderous ovation, as the video board behind her flashes old family pictures.” (USA Today, 8/28/12)
Real Clear Politics’ Scott Conroy: “Ann Romney Making This Look Easy.” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
ABC News’ Shushannah Walshe: “Impressive.” “I’m surprised about how perfectly relaxed Ann Romney seems in front of such a massive crowd. Impressive.” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
Miami Herald’s Mary Ellen Klas: “Ann Romney Is Killing It – With Crowd, Applause, Charm.” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
NBC News’ Michael O’Brien: “Ann Romney Making A Strong Pitch To Women Voters.” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
The Wall Street Journal’s Sara Murray: “The Floor Goes Wild.” “Mitt Romney takes the stage, and the two kiss. The floor goes wild.” (The Wall Street Journal, 8/28/12)
BuzzFeed’s Zeke Miller: “And Ann Romney Finishes To A Massive Standing Ovation” (Twitter.com, 8/28/12)
The Washington Post’s Philip Rucker: “But The Moment Ann Romney Stepped On Stage In A Radiant Red Dress, The Tampa Bay Times Forum Fell Silent.” (The Washington Post, 8/28/12)
I was thrilled to watch Ann Romney be her usual dynamic, down-to-earth self as she spoke to 2,286 delegates, 2,125 alternate delegates from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories, thousands in the convention center, and a viewing audience estimated at 20 million. It was as if she was having a conversation with America (Luce Fortuno, Puerto Rico’s First Lady, introduced Ann.):
To hear how loud the applause really was as Ann appeared on stage click here (didn’t post this video due to distracting logo stamp).
Five highlights from Ann’s knock-em-alive speech:
1 – Romney’s work ethic:
“But let me say this to every American who is thinking about who should be our next President: No one will work harder. No one will care more. No one will move heaven and earth like Mitt Romney to make this country a better place to live!“
2 – Romney’s success:
“And let’s be honest. If the last four years had been more successful, do we really think there would be this attack on Mitt Romney’s success?
But as his partner on this amazing journey, I can tell you Mitt Romney was not handed success.
He built it.
He stayed in Massachusetts after graduate school and got a job. I saw the long hours that started with that first job. I was there when he and a small group of friends talked about starting a new company. I was there when they struggled and wondered if the whole idea just wasn’t going to work. Mitt’s reaction was to work harder and press on.
Today that company has become another great American success story.”
3 – Romney’s generosity:
“Mitt doesn’t like to talk about how he has helped others because he sees it as a privilege, not a political talking point. And we’re no different than the millions of Americans who quietly help their neighbors, their churches and their communities. They don’t do it so that others will think more of them.
They do it because there IS no greater joy.”
4 – Why Mitt Romney is the right choice:
“This is the man America needs.
This is the man who will wake up every day with the determination to solve the problems that others say can’t be solved, to fix what others say is beyond repair. This is the man who will work harder than anyone so that we can work a little less hard.
I can’t tell you what will happen over the next four years. But I can only stand here tonight, as a wife, a mother, a grandmother, an American, and make you this solemn commitment:
This man will not fail.
This man will not let us down.
This man will lift up America!“
5 – On women:
“I’m not sure if men really understand this, but I don’t think there’s a woman in America who really expects her life to be easy. In our own ways, we all know better!
And that’s fine. We don’t want easy. But these last few years have been harder than they needed to be. It’s all the little things — that price at the pump you just can’t believe, the grocery bills that just get bigger; all those things that used to be free, like school sports, are now one more bill to pay. It’s all the little things that pile up to become big things. And the big things — the good jobs, the chance at college, that home you want to buy, just get harder. Everything has become harder.”
As Colorado alternate delegate Todd King exclaimed, “People in the audience were staring at the screen, looked like they were hanging on every single word she said. I’ve not seen that with any other speaker.”
Outstanding, Ann! Just outstanding.
UPDATE Aug 20, 2012 - I thought you’d like to see some of what our neighbors to the north think of Mrs. Romney’s speech. Here is Alex Pierson and Brigitte Pelleren from SUN News in Canada (Ms. Pelleren was reporting from Ottawa):
Pelleren: Finally! We have a woman’s issue-oriented speech in which we’re not just talking about, you know, our reproductive organs.I mean, we also have brains. We also have hearts. We also have – think about the budget, we look about expenses, we try to make things work for, you know, the home, the children, and the grandchildren. I mean this is a common eperience for women.
… Really, this relates to the experience day-to-day of a lot of women in America and I thought this was a very, very good speech.
Supporters hold up signs as Ann Romney, wife of U.S. Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, addresses the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012.
(Photo – Charlie Neibergall/AP)
GOP presidential candidates appear on stage at the CNN/Tea Party debate last night in Tamp, FL. 9/12/11 (photo by David and Holloway/CNN)
What a night for Mitt Romney at the GOP CNN/Tea Party debate in Tampa, Florida! He more than held his own and by some early accounts – won – in a crowd that clearly had a likin’ for Rick Perry (although Perry faded in the last half; the crowd didn’t like his gardasil vaccine mandate and he received boo’s on his immigration stance.)
★ The Weekly Standard – Fred Barnes (my favorite article)
If a debate more than four months before the first vote is cast can influence the outcome of a presidential nomination race, the debate last night among eight Republicans should aid Mitt Romney’s candidacy. Seldom has there been as clear a winner.
Romney was crisp and succinct, prepared and focused, and aggressive in going after his chief rival for the GOP presidential nomination, Texas governor Rick Perry, when he needed to be. Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, showed once again that he’s a far better candidate now than he was four years ago.
He did well in these instances, among others: spelling out the differences between the health care plan he championed in Massachusetts and Obamacare; explaining the problem with the Fair Tax is that it gives short shrift to the middle class; pointing out the built-in advantages Perry has in Texas in governing successfully; and refraining from boasting, except to say that “if America needs a turnaround, that’s what I do.”
Romney challenged Perry on Social Security at the outset of the debate, which was held in Florida and billed as a collaboration of CNN and various Tea Party organizations. It was Tea Party people who asked the questions, mostly better ones than a panel of reporters or pundits would probably have asked.
The first question was on Social Security, which Perry has called a Ponzi scheme and a failure. Romney has suggested Perry’s view makes him unelectable.
When Perry didn’t back down from those comments, Romney jumped in with questions, and host Wolf Blitzer let him proceed. Romney asked Perry about his recent book in which he said Social Security is unconstitutional and might be better run by the states.
Perry didn’t have a ready answer, or at least not a persuasive one. Nor did he offer the one thing that I expected from him in the debate: a Perry plan for fixing Social Security’s looming insolvency. [...]
Back to Romney. The candidates were asked what they’d bring to the White House – what thing. Romney gave the best answer after repeating the Winston Churchill quotation that America always does the right thing after trying everything else first. He said he’d bring the bust of Churchill, sent away by President Obama, back to the White House.
[…] Romney seized control of the tempo in what may have been his strongest performance so far. He seemed at ease taking the fight to Perry and got the better of their heated exchanges. The former Massachusetts governor was clearly trying to position himself as the reassuring grownup on stage and Perry as the fearmonger.
Let’s unpack their verbal clash and see what it tells us about each man and his strategy.
Perry tried to clean up his mess from last week’s MSNBC debate, when he attacked Social Security as a Ponzi scheme without suggesting how he might fix it. This time he offered those near retirement age a “slam-dunk guarantee” they’d get their benefits before hailing his own “courage” in criticizing the ailing system.
Romney didn’t miss a beat, calling Perry’s Ponzi language “over the top” and “frightful” before delivering his strongest punch: that the Texan had called Social Security unconstitutional and “not something the federal government ought to be involved in.”
Mitt Romney: Four debates. Four times Romney has wound up in the winner’s circle. It’s not a coincidence. Romney proved yet again that he is the best debater in this field with another solid performance in which he effectively downplayed his liabilities on health care and accentuated his strengths on jobs and the economy. Romney played more offense than he has in previous debates, taking the fight to Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Social Security. He also got a major assist from Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.) and former senator Rick Santorum (Pa.), both of whom relentlessly bashed Perry. But that’s how debates work. Romney also, smartly, ignored the tea party audience in the hall — who occasionally booed him — and focused his messaging on the much broader audience of people watching the debate on CNN.