7.8 Is Good News for Obama
When President Obama and Mitt Romney walked off of the stage in their Denver debate, their was no doubt about who "won." Romney went toe to toe with the President, and held his own. Romney provided us with some of the baloney he has been proposing throughout his campaign, and even made some new facts up as he went along. Romney, for example, denied that any plan of his calls for a $5 trillion tax cut, even though his plans call for precisely that. It was a beautiful debate maneuver. Romney successfully kept Obama on the defensive.
I kept wondering where Obama was, and why was that other guy on the stage taking his place? For the man standing in for Obama showed none of the passion, fire or charisma that the real Obama possesses. You see, that Obama would never have let Romney get away without explaining his 47 percent comments. Campaign Obama would have called Romney out on Medicare, by saying, flatly, that the 716 billion dollars in cuts that Romney accused him of happen to be in Paul Ryan's own plan. Campaign Obama would have demanded to know what loopholes, exactly, Romney is hoping to cut. Campaign Obama would also have pointed out that Romney flip-flopped, yet again, by expressing his sudden, new found support for government regulations...
Obama's first debate performance was passive. The man on the stage that night was uncharming, unconvincing and clearly uninterested with the proceedings. He was also noticeably uncomfortable with having to stand in prime time and defend his record. Hence, a poor performance for Obama, and a stellar performance by Romney.
But that was on Wednesday. Any euphoria the Romney Team must have felt following the debates has now just been stopped dead in its tracks. The new jobs report for September showed a decline in the unemployment rate, which now stands at 7.8 percent. What is more, that growth comes mostly from an upsurge in people finding jobs, which is the polar opposite of Romney's claim that some people have just given up looking for work. And the numbers of the August jobs report have undergone revisions. 142,000 jobs were added in August, which is better than the original report.
Romney was hoping to deliver Obama a 1-2 punch; a victory in the debates, followed by another poor jobs report would have helped Romney to no end. But Romney did well in the debates, which usually never make much difference in the election. And then, after Romney delivered a theme of 41 months of 8 percent unemployment, the unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent. In other words, reality swept the floor from under Romney's feet. His strongest argument, that the economy has not grown under Obama, has shown actual growth. It undermines a central theme of Romney's campaign.
Obama has got to be the luckiest politician on the planet. Just two days after being walloped by a weak, uninspiring challenger, the heavens deliver Obama this; the lowest unemployment rate since he took office.
The first debate was never going to change the dynamics of the race, but the new numbers on the economy might.