President Obama: “Clear victory”…“Strong leader”…“Score this one for the President.” Mitt Romney: “Botched”…“Meek”…“Lost”…“Too much valium”…“Flat-out lying”…“Not claiming victory”
October 23, 2012

Clearly, Mitt Romney was way out of his league:

James Carville: “If this had would’ve been a Little League baseball game, they would’ve called the thing after four innings.”

CBS poll: “Well, Scott, the uncommitted voters in our survey - immediately after the debate was over - gave a clear victory to President Obama this evening.”

Neil Cavuto:“I think that Mitt Romney botched a lot of things tonight.”

Larry Kudlow: “I think there’s a little too much valium in the Romney presentation tonight.”

Matt Dowd: “But for the commander-in-chief, strong leader… he actually lost that strong leader tonight to the President.”

Chuck Todd: “They’re not claiming victory tonight… at times I felt like he was giving a book report, that there were a lot of world book facts that would show up in some of his answers.”

John King: “There’s no question debate coaches would score this one for the president.”

Joe Trippi: “I just want to call this debate the big hug, because I think that's what Romney was doing. He decided he was going to hug Obama on policy after policy, not disagree with him.”

Chuck Todd: “I was surprised at how meek at times Mitt Romney was.”

Norah O’Donnell: “He repeatedly said that the President was right on issues, that he concurred with him on a number of issues. In fact, it was President Obama who said that Romney was having a hard time differentiating himself.”

Martha Raddatz: “President Obama humanized what he was talking about. He talked a lot about the troops. He talked about the survivors from 9/11. He talked about the people in Israel. So if, in fact, he was going towards the female vote, he probably got their attention with that sort of approach.”

ABC Fact Check: “One was when Mitt Romney repeated what he said before, that the President went on an apology tour when he became president. We’ve looked at all those speeches on those foreign trips. The President didn't apologize for America.”

Howard Fineman: “The Obama people insist - and I think with some good reason – that Mitt Romney was just flat-out lying, not to put too fine a point on it, on the question of whether he, Mitt Romney, was willing to support direct federal help, the kind of help the President put forth, for the auto industry.”

David Gergen: “I do think that the Democrats and President Obama have a legitimate argument. The guy who came into these debates was not the candidate we saw in the primaries. We go back to the etch-a-sketch.”

A full transcript of the debate is available here.

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