As the first round of presidential debates drew to a close, a new Mitt Romney had seemingly emerged. One whose party was interested in bi-partisan cooperation and supported public offices such as teachers, as well as not supporting the financing of a 5 trillion tax cut for the rich to be paid by the middle class. He debated in a cool, calm and collected manner, while a somewhat shocked looking Obama debated almost exclusively from a defensive angle, despite having ample opportunity to respond to Romneys attacks.
When the US Presidential Debates are viewed in a solely theatrical light, Mitt Romney comes across as the clear winner, especially as Obama refused to attack any policies, or discrepancies with the published GOP party platform. As Romney appeared sovereign and managed not even to let the moderator Jim Lehrer speak freely. In the true sense of the word, Mitt Romney dominated the debate. He even went so far as to describe part of his tax saving plan, in which he would cancel funding for the PBS Network, where the moderator works. This would effectively cut 0.012% of the federal budget, as well as cancel several public broadcast services and news platforms. However, as public services have generally not received much positive attention by the platform, this was likely one of the least dubious comments of the evening.
The Thinkprogress Fact checking website lauded Romney with a total of 27 "Myths" during his 38 Minutes of speaking time, while the New Yorks Times printed a column describing the performance as having "misreprented the platform on which he and Paul Ryan are actually running."
President Obama has also released a public statement regarding the debates, specifically the misrepresentation of policies by Mitt Romney, stating that "it couldn't have been Mitt Romney", as Romneys actual platform and that presented during the debate were laid out according to the values of completely different people. Viewed in the cold light of day, it appears that Obama's lack of conviction may have stemmed more from a weariness towards stemming the flow of misinformation, than the inability to intelligently respond to Romneys claims.