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Pundits Wrong: Obama Won Debate

By Eugene Stovall, Political Analyst

Oct. 5, 2012 - After a season of Republican debates, where political candidates have tried to outdo each other in pandering to their anti-intellectual, corrupt and deceitful base, the political pundits were quick to declare their disappointment with the first debate between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. The pundits were looking for a brawl of words, complete with epithets, invasion of personal space and $10,000 bets. They wanted to see two candidates engaging in the kind of tasteless and uncultured electioneering, typical of Republican debating, that gives a whole new meaning to term, Ugly American. Mitt Romney wanted to meet the pundits’ expectations; but to the chagrin of the media pundits, Barack Obama decided to maintain his dignity and the dignity of his office. The president behaved with decorum and statesmanship, demonstrating how a world leader actually behaves.


Pundits like Bill Maher wanted Barack Obama to interrupt every time Mitt Romney told an outright lie, but the viewers knew.  When Mitt Romney said that he would create more jobs with higher wages, the viewers knew that he lies since Romney's wealth comes from the exploitation of workers all around the world and the destruction of labor unions in America. It was not necessary for Barack Obama to demean himself to point out that Romney lied about giving the super rich tax breaks when everyone knows that Romney's Swiss bank accounts are filled with American tax dollars.


On the other hand, the pundits all but ignored Barack Obama’s understated comments that the billions in government oil subsidies ought to be ended. Instead of ignoring the president’s offer to end government bailouts for oil companies, the pundits should urge him to end the billions in government subsidies to sugar and feedstock growers, as well. The pundits also ignored the president’s remarks about Romney’s gift of an extra 3 trillion dollars in government subsidies to the defense industry to tide over his billionaire buddies through a Romney presidential period of economic austerity.


The presidential debate seemed to have caught the pundits off-guard, but not the American people. No one viewing the first presidential debate missed the genuine glee that Mitt Romney displayed as he spoke of his plans to cut off funding for public broadcasting and fire “Big Bird”. Romney was able to tie his genuine love for firing workers to his dream of an American society where the super rich control all broadcasting. Without public broadcasting eliminated, Romney and his fellow plutocrats can dictate what the public thinks and how it behaves. Romney fooled the pundits but not the public. Of course, many would have liked to have heard more from the president about other issues including the Republican Party's War on Women and efforts at voter suppression. However, the viewers of the first presidential debate saw in Romney's plan to rid American culture of Big Bird, Oscar, Elmo and the other inhabitants of Sesame Street, rather than his plan for America. So despite the pundits, the American viewing public knows that Barack Obama won the first presidential debate.


Dr. Eugene Stovall is a long-time contributing political analyst and social commentator  to The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway.

* Opinions and columns do not necessarily express the editorial stand of The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway. BIHMST presents ‘Think Pieces’ to our eminent Travelers to begin a process called dialogue. Thank you, Travelers!


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