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The Presidential Debate: Did Moderator Jim Lehrer Get Steamrolled By Mitt Romney?

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: presidential debates, obama, romney, government, ethics, elections, usa )

- 2448 days ago -
The GOP candidate is blowing past Lehrer's time limits, drawing testy rebukes


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Carol Dreeszen (346)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 12:41 am
OK...Wait a minute Cal..I was watching too!!! Romney didn't have anymore time to answer questions than Obama did!! There is no way he steam rolled over the moderator as both Obama and Romney went past their alloted time and being this was a debate of all debates where they BOTH wanted to get their fair share of time in to REPLY to EACH OTHER they BOTH went over the alloted time MANY times!! So this was definitely an even time over IMO!! WHY would someone come up with an article like this unless they wanted to start more BS!?!? Unbelievable!!!

Judy C (91)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 12:55 am
Romney started just ignoring the time limits. Then Obama began to follow suit. This is called thinking you're "bigger than the rules".

Carol Dreeszen (346)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 12:57 am
You have to be kidding me!!!!!!!!!! But...isn't that what's been going on forever!? I mean you have to blame someobody so it's never Obama or the Democrats right!? Urrgghhhhhhhhhh...unreal!!

Cam V (417)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 1:06 am
Obama never showed up. He simply was not there.

Mary Riley (987)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 1:25 am
After tonight they are actually calling Lehrer and moderator?

Jae A (316)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 2:20 am
No Carol..what's unreal is that Romney can't follow the rules and that would get frustrating to any opponent....Romney can't even do the math as to his own policies to boot.

They need to turn the debate back over to the Womens League of Voters and then we'd see some hard ball questions and holding those in the debate to stay within all rules.

Past Member (0)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 4:19 am
When a candidate speaks over the time allotted to him..

-if he's your man, he's really trying to convey something so important, its OK to take a minute more
-if he's not, he clearly has no respect for his opponent and the format

And the president spoke 4 minutes longer than Romney.

Jae A (316)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 8:03 am
..if he's your man he did :-)...As they say on playgrounds..Romney started it so all's fair from that point on in the adult world John...or at least it is in mine opinion.

Kit B (276)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 10:02 am

The candidates were asked to self moderate the time allotted, so no I don't think Jim Lehrer was over-run as much as these things always get out of hand. Though I was not impressed by the lack of civility displayed by Romney, if he was any one else, I wonder if he was on drugs. I haven't seen him so totally without a sense of proper decorum, but maybe he was just hyper because his numbers were a little low. I don't think these debates ever allow us learn any thing about the candidates, we each must take it upon ourselves to do the research and find out where each of these men actually stand, what they plan to do or not do, in the coming 4 years.

I preferred the debates when they were moderated and conducted by the League of Women Voters, there was less opportunity for canned answers and more need for actually knowing the depth of each topic.

What we all should know, is basic math. You can not cut taxes, increase the military, and not cut other needed Federal programs. I still have no idea what Romney's secret plans might be, nor does any one else. His plans and ideas change with each passing day, depending on what he thinks we want to hear.

Cam V (417)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 12:31 pm
Blame game? Blame the moderator. Blame Romney but NEVER blame Obama who simply was not there. The one who was was unprepared, could not defend the indefensable mess he has made of America and cannot stand without adoring crowds throwing roses at him. He was a failure at the debate solely because the man is clueless and always has been. WORST PRESIDENT EVER!

Carrie B (306)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 1:51 pm
Lehrer was incompetent and a disappointment and Romney was the liar he always is. Obama debated a bowl of jello and the debate was moderated be a glob of melting cheese.

Florence Eaise (132)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 4:10 pm
in a word YES of coure he did any idiot watching couldve niticed it had they wanted too!

Carol Dreeszen (346)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 4:40 pm
Romney only responded to Obama's comments that were untruthful rather than let the lie go by as it has happened so many times with Obama. I would do the same thing if someone said something that was a lie instead of letting it go by leading the people to believe it was truth! Time over or not...the people deserve to hear the truth..this country has lacked that for the past 4 years!!

Cam V (417)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 4:51 pm
Hey Carol! Lehrer is complaining that both candidates disrespected him. Obama's bad show had nothing to do with anybody but Obama. But then we know personal responsibility is not something he likes to take for things eh?

Janet R (38)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 7:11 pm
I thought Romney was disrespectful to Lehrer but then, all's fair in business and politics, right? I loved it when he said if he were elected, he would get rid of government subsidies of PBS, what a pompous asshole. And, while he passed Romneycare, he would repeal Obamacare, see previous assessment. And, his drill, baby, drill, BS, was enlightening too. I think it is sad that Obama didn't bring his A-game, I bet he will step it up for the next debate. I think it is ridiculous that the Kochs bought the questions for their little slave, Romney. If he didn't have a chance to practice his answers and it was a free-form debate, he wouldn't have looked so polished.

Stephen Brian (23)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 7:38 pm
It really looked to me like Lehrer deliberately tried to keep to the background and let the candidates go at it. Romney's lack of decorum, taking the last word five times as opposed to the three which it was agreed each candidate would get, left it looking like he tried to turn the debate into a monologue, so I was surprised to see in the CNN analysis that Obama had actually taken 10% more time (a difference of four minutes). It seems a little difficult to swallow the line that Romney was steamrolling others when he was not even the one who spoke the most. Romney just had a larger presence on stage, making it look like he spoke more than he did.

Cam V (417)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 7:43 pm
Romney won hands down just as he will win the election. For the sake of your Republic you had better hope he does defeat Obama because you cannot afford another four years of the incompetent one at the wheel.

Barbara W (342)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 9:01 pm
One word YES!

Romney was, as usual, rude, pushy and full of himself.... That Cheshire grin did not fool anyone.. Lehrer was weak and allowed Romney to steal time and take over the debate..... President Obama was not up to his stride but, he still showed class as a leader should. Fear not he will beat big moneys best friend..

And Cam, Romney will not win and I don't believe that anything he has done in the past nor present makes him any better a leader then Obama. If Republicans thought they could win they would not have been stacking the deck since Republican governors won in certain states. Any American with their head out of the sand know that both party's have dropped the ball. But Romney is a turncoat.. He and his corporate buddies have constantly bet against America and her citizens..

As for incompetence! let's see? Who are Obamas advisers? Well pretty much the same as GWB, less Cheney, and pretty much the same garbage Romney will have .. So please don't tell "We" Americans what "We" need. When Obama wins and he will he must fire some more dead wood.

The tea Party and crooked to the core Republicans with at least 28 Democrats have sure done a number on this President and that has hurt US! The republicans have, by their treasonous actions, War whoring, created the mess "We" are facing. One man cannot do the job. The entire Congress less a few are corrupt. There's a reason this Congress, the House Of Representatives, is considered the worse in history.. Can't blame Pelosi for this one..

American's need to elect new unblemished blood if "We" are to ever see this nation operate as she once did. We also need to follow Ron Paul's advise "No more tax dollars to any other nation unless America fixes her house first. No more wars for Israel.. No more wars for oil.. Charity must begin at home and so it shall.

American's need to take control of Washington and "We" will. It's time to heed Thomas Jefferson's advise.. No more entanglements with the problems of other nations. Commerce and peaceful relations. We need to get on a better standing, relationship, with the countries south of our borders and with Cuba..

What's happened to Mexico goes back to old man Bush..Escalated under GWB.. Obamas administration did not start this mess that Mexico's going through. It's like Kennedy being blamed for the Bay Of Pigs! This was begun under Ike's watch.

Laura H (950)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 9:21 pm
Kit-"I wonder if he (Romney) was on drugs" seems he was not on drugs but in a manic state. That would explain why he was talking so fast; why he kept repeating the same lines over and over.
Even Ann Romney said she is worried about her husband's 'mental state'; now we know WHY.

That cannot explain all of the lying however; Romney even said his 5 sons are great liars so it looks lke it is a family trait.

jo M. (3)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 10:21 pm
Carrie, don't you mean Obama debated like a bowl of jello? Romney is clearly no bigger a liar than Obama. So, choose your poison, or the lesser of two evils, or whatever.

Cam V (417)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 10:24 pm
Obama was there in person but not in spirit. That was evident.

Barbara W (342)
Thursday October 4, 2012, 10:59 pm
Obama's Approval Rating Soars To Its Highest Point In Three Years

Those who know me understand that I am very disenchanted with both party's but until "We" can grow a :Powerful" third party "We" are stuck with the lessor and Republicans, especially with Romney/Paul are lone men out!

it's not enough to talk third party. It's important if "We" believe in a third party to build one. At the moment cleaning up the democrats should be a priority. Those who think like Repugs, have with it.

For me it's the old fashioned Democrats I want back..I am a bleeding heart liberal and I do not apologize for caring about the least of these!

Stephen Brian (23)
Friday October 5, 2012, 7:52 am
Then again, it is always possible that Obama was playing a longer game. With two more debates to go, he may have deliberately set expectations low, making it easier for him to win those two. It's a risky strategy, but with a man so well-known as an effective speaker in campaigning, that would explain his amazingly lackluster performance at the debate. On the other hand, there have also been reports that he doesn't actually enjoy the day-to-day aspects of the ob of the president, so he may actually be trying to get out of it without directly betraying the party.

Barbara Tomlinson (431)
Friday October 5, 2012, 2:55 pm
I think we were all expecting Rmoney to do a real GAFFE -- as he has been in the HABIT of doing regularly, recently -- and were shocked when he "didn't do too badly". We were waiting for a Gaffe, like people watch a NASCAR race for a horrible accident to happen!
Rmoney's "zingers" missed the mark and fell flat. Among these were, "you have your big house and your big airplane", apparently referring to the White House and to Air Force One. Very STRANGE, to say the least, coming from one whose Mansion has a separate elevator for all his cars! Hard to figure out what this was supposed to do -- picture the President as a "privileged elitist" thus taking the heat off Rmoney being one? STUPID!

Then there was the one where Rmoney ACCUSED THE PRESIDENT TO HIS FACE OF LYING -- FIGHTING WORDS that I think even President Obama couldn't have been prepared for! The only "proper" response to THAT, in some parts of the country at some times in history, was to reach for your gun! And, stupid idiot Rmoney kindof "softened" his remarks a little, by saying that "his 5 boys lied to him all the time" {I am paraphrasing}. So, that accusation isn't REALLY all that bad...just like saying "naughty, naughty" to my kids!.
[I'd like to tell Rmoney here, that I have raised a daughter, and I CAN'T REMEMBER A TIME WHEN SHE LIED TO HER PARENTS. We had brought her up to NOT BE AFRAID to tell us the Truth.... I mean literally, I can't remember a time when she lied, or would have felt she had to....]
As someone else said, Obama should've gone across and SLAPPED THE HELL OUT OF MITT THE TWIT.... very self-controlled that he did nothing!
Of course, to Rmoney's kind of people, it is OKAY TO DISS "N" WORDS, THEY HAVE NO "HONOR" TO DEFEND LIKE A WHITE MAN DOES...
And then there is Rmoney's "I love Big Bird", which may be remembered for a while. I have dealt with that elsewhere. Privatize everything! is what the Corporations want...
While Rmoney's wanna-be "zingers" fell absolutely FLAT, and were offensive as could be --
what made them "pass" with little comment, was Rmoney's DELIVERY. Of his whole "debate" style.

Rmoney's body language, phoney facial expressions, voice, etc., have before this, suggested Insecurity, Desire to please, Kowtowing to Public Opinion... not very confidence- building in a potential Prez!
I and others FULLY EXPECTED A MELT-DOWN during, or even before, the Debates. Mitt the Twit was NOT HANDLING HIMSELF WELL. He was having "temper tantrums" backstage and LOSING IT. Even Ann Rmoney, said she was worried about his mental health!

Somehow, all this CHANGED OVERNIGHT. Rmoney spoke very rapidly and non-stop and wouldn't be interrupted. He DID look, for a change, CONFIDENT. Not at ALL what we expected, could have expected from previous live interviews and videos, where he appeared anxious, and with that nervous, wide-eyed eyebrows-up eager-to-please look!
He morphed into the aggressive high-school bully with the scissors in his hand, into the guy on the Mother Jones video speaking confidently to those who he knew liked him in the first place.

Of course it was a GREAT advantage for Rmoney, that the debate people were persuaded, for the first time in Presidential debate history, to let him see the questions IN ADVANCE. So he could REHEARSE. And rehearse and rehearse and rehearse.... until "perfect". {And, given the Koch brothers' influence, probably the QUESTIONS were DESIGNED to please the Rmoney camp, also.}

But, a lot of people see MORE than just "canned answers and rehearsals" here. The WAY Rmoney spoke.... well, Cocaine is said to give people super-confidence in themselves, super-energy. A feeling you are the king of the world, can't be stopped. Of course, using that would be illegal, wouldn't it. However, there are now synthetic DESIGNER DRUGS that imitate the effects of ANYthing. And some of these Designer Drugs are too new to be illegal, yet.
Besides a Cocaine High {or imitation one}, other people have said they detected a Speed, or Methamphetamine High. Others have seen just a plain Caffeine High. {Caffeine being banned for Mormons, if he used it or some synthetic substitute that had the same effect, Rmoney might be super-susceptible to even a small amount of it.}

Anyway, some sort of a Speed-Freak High would explain a LOT -- the BULLYING attitude, the IGNORING of time limits, the RAPID talking as if to get it all out before it's forgotten, and the "CONFIDENT" carriage and body language, which are otherwise SO STRANGE to see in Rmoney's usually zombie-like, robotic self. Even his "death-look" eyes, looked somehow different!
I'm just sayin'. It's not necessarily anything illegal. It may be just a Caffeine high. But, it's gotta be SOMEthing. SOMEthing has changed about Rmoney's public appearance. You COULDN'T NOT notice it! {Double negative.}

Sheryl G (359)
Friday October 5, 2012, 6:12 pm
The whole thing was sad, I'm glad I watched it on Democracy Now and had the pleasure of seeing Rocky Anderson of the Justice Party and Dr. Jill Stein of the Green Party conduct themselves in respectful manner, were a lot more understandable in their presentation, and in my eyes blew the pants off of both the Republicans and Democrats. If you all must fight who was the better, I think they both were rather sad and Romney clearly had disrespected the moderator.

But it is a dog and pony show now since the League of Women Voters are no longer doing the debates, this is the Corporate show now, and so that is what you get.

Stephen Brian (23)
Saturday October 6, 2012, 10:25 am
Hi BMutiny,

The first zinger you mentioned actually did not fall flat among those whose votes Romney really seeks. The rest of the sentence, where Obama was not entitled to his own facts was the real point there, not the part you talked about. Conservatives have accused liberals of making up "facts" to set the terms of discussion for a long time: (I disagree with much of the rhetoric in this, but note that it is pretty much conservative talking-points and the video is over a year old.) The last part of Romney's sentence probably worked quite well with consrevatives, who may have been reluctant to vote for him due to RommeyCare.

Regarding what you say Obama should have done: Care2 members accuse Republicans, en masse, of lying constantly. Should the Republican party organize slapping-mobs and come after Care2 posters? What you advocate is simply not civilized. It looks to me like you are so caught up in the idea that self-declared liberals are always the "good guys" that you have lost all sense of vigilance regarding their actions and believe they can go and do anything so long as it is to further some cause or other, despite your obvious failure to count the maintenance of a peaceful society, one where the leader does not publicly turn to violence in response to non-threatening, non-criminal words, among those "liberal" causes.

Regarding seeing the questions in advance: Both sides knew the topics, but neither knew the exact questions. Romney was given no advantage there by those running the debate. His related advantage came from Obama's difficulty connecting with any statement which is not explicitly written out for him on a teleprompter. It is normal and fair to do better because one is better at some relevant skill than one's opponent.

What changed Romney's appearance was the fact that the show was live and of a pre-declared format. The news-agencies which you follow could not edit the footage nor add commentary which would make him look foolish. Here's an example: Do you remember Romney's comment about how Israelis do better than Palestinians due to cultural differences? Had Obama said it, the reports would have drawn up the fact that Palestinian women are about 70% less likely to join the workforce than are Israeli women, and he would have been declared a champion of women's rights in the Arab world. Either that, or the difference in the value of education within the family, making him a champion of education. Coming from Romney, the added commentary was such that it was seen as a racist gaffe.
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