The definition of a game changer is to specifically develop a tactic to alter the way something is done, thought about or produced. It would seem by all elements per Wednesday night’s debate between President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney that a game change is on the horizon. At least, that’s what the media is on fire about. Somehow though, the game changer that the elephant party stated Romney needed didn’t yield any substance. Sure, Romney was polished, presentable, confident, aggressive and ready to pounce on everything Obama has and hasn’t done for the past four years; but the basic foundation of points he made were nothing more than sleight of hand, parlor tricks. But we can’t blame Romney. He saw an opportunity and took advantage. The moderator, PBS’ Jim Lehrer, was a pushover – allowing both candidates (well Romney), to speak whenever they felt like it. In truth, Big Bird may have been a better moderator, and Romney graciously remarked that he liked Big Bird – so perhaps next time, it should be considered.
Criticism thus far has been that Obama seemed clueless and listless. Clueless, no. Listless, maybe. Obama did offer practical details and prescriptions for moving the country forward from his view of things, but to most watching; that didn’t come across. Democrats wanted to see a more bellicose Obama. A go for the jugular, if you will, fight relentlessly kind of guy. Obama has never been overtly cutthroat and to expect that now is hogwash. Obama has always been composed, collected and more subtle in his approach – a quality that got him elected in 2008. That is what has made him likeable, like the regular guy on the street. He is the opposite of the dare I say media cliché of the angry Black. If you are unfamiliar with the connotation, it is a phrase used to describe African Americans, more so men than women, as being fiercely on the defense and assuming that everything directed at them is to prod them to show rage.
But angry Black connotation aside, Obama could have dealt a few more blows to Romney and opted not to. Where was the 47% comment; any mentioning of Bain. And the blows that were dealt – Romney politely pushed them aside, evading Lehrer’s questions and instead became both moderator and debater. So what happens now? Not much. Gazing into the political crystal ball, Romney will continually hoodwink the public that he is far removed from Bush getting a bump in the polls; the media will feast on Obama’s unemotional performance and Romney’s enlivened demeanor. It was definitely red meat for the Republicans and those supporting Romney; and created a warning sign to Democrats that while Obama may be cool, calm and more substantive, going for the jugular is what wins debates and what may prove to be a game changer come Election Day.