Jan 20 2012
After sleeping on it a bit, I think it was generally a good debate last night. Newt seems to have skated past the media’s muck-raking, can’t say the same for Romney on tax havens in the Cayman’s.
Things that made me cringe:
Ron Paul’s awkward reminders of his military service. His segues between his service and issues seemed like pandering.
Santorum’s back-stabbing of Newt as Speaker on right to life and other topics. We all know Newt has switched positions, sometimes at convenient times. But somehow Rick’s delivery comes off as if he is superior to all.
Romney’s evasion on tax returns and continued denial that RomneyCare was a bad idea.
Newt’s comments on SOPA and Hollywood smacked of favoritism.
Paul’s comments on abortion and taking it out hands of the federal government was a good push back on Santorum. His comment about having two patients when dealing with pregnant mothers was spot on.
Santorum did well on the RomneyCare issue, really nailed it with facts and problems.
Romney had very few topical strong points that set him above the rest. His best moment was early on when he showed Santorum how to deal with the Gingrich marriage issue – move onto the real debate.
Newt really blasted the media over its muckraking, always a winner in conservative circles. Probably a winner with centrists as well. Was on average better than the rest on each topic.
I think overall Romney took more hits. He just did not look smooth but more elitist in his responses. That gap is beginning to widen. Paul and Santorum did OK, but their supporters seemed to think every answer was gold. This gives their campaigns a cult feeling and turns off the average voter. I would have to say Newt won the night here.