The president did absymially in the debate. He was honest and thoughtful, but also boring, nerdy, and unsocial. Nothing surprising there.
Mitt Romney did well in the debate. He lied about numbers, changed long standing opinions, but maintained good eye contact and otherwise played to the crowd. Nothing very surprising there.
What they did was typical, but how extremely they did it was not expected. The result was Romney dominated the social aspects of the debate and the population doesn't care all that much about the facts.
But given the President's election plan, it seems to be irrelevant.
The GOP does not need to convince the undecided to vote for them. They don't matter that much in this election.
They need to convince the reluctant conservatives to vote for them. Pedaling a softer, less conservative Romney (which they did) won't do that.
They need to convince Obama's Democrats that the GOP isn't that bad. But the Democrats aren't voting against Romney, they are either voting:
- Against the conservative anti: gay, abortion, racist agenda
- Against the GOP's extreme 'no compromise' (not even $10 in program cuts for $1 in tax hikes)
- For the first Black President
- For the President that killed Bin Laden
- For the President that got us out of Iraq
- For ObamaCare
Romney can only win via a major, major setback for the President. This isn't anywhere near bad enough.