There’s not much a conservative can say about last night’s debate that hasn’t been said by Barack Obama’s normal corps of media enablers. They turned on him like a pack of howling hyenas, perhaps demonstrating that deep down they know their man is an emperor with few clothes.
Here’s a sampling:
Joe Klein, Time magazine: “Barack Obama lost it. I mean, he got his butt kicked. It was, in fact, one of the most inept performances I’ve ever seen by a sitting President. . . . Obama’s cool was ice cold. It was 30 minutes into the debate, by my count, before he mentioned an actual human being. Romney was talking about actual people who were ‘crushed’ and ‘buried’ — pace Joe Biden — and ‘hurting’ in his very first answer.”
Ed Schultz of MSNBC: “I think (Obama) was off his game. I was absolutely stunned tonight.”
Andrew Sullivan of the Daily Beast: “He choked. He lost. He may even have lost the election tonight.”
Bill Maher, HBO: “Obama looks like he DOES need a teleprompter.”
Howard Fineman, editorial director of the Huffington Post: “It’s a big wake up call to the Obama campaign with 34 days to go.”
Even when media defenders of the president, such as MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell, tried to coax reassuring words from Obama surrogates in the spin room they came up empty. Consider this exchange with Maryland governor Martin O’Malley, head of the Democratic Governors Association:
O’Donnell: “If you could do ten minutes of coaching with the president on the next debate, based on what you saw tonight, what would you tell him to do differently.”
O’Malley: “Uh, I don’t know.”
Team Obama has twelve days to come up with a better strategy than that before the next debate.