The Hammer of Kraut: “It’s Unequivocal… Romney Won”


Real Clear Politics:

Charles Krauthammer: I think it’s unequivocal, Romney won. And he didn’t just win tactically, but strategically. Strategically, all he needed to do is basically draw. He needed to continue the momentum he’s had since the first debate, and this will continue it. Tactically, he simply had to get up there and show that he’s a competent man, somebody who you could trust as commander in chief, a who knows every area of the globe and he gave interesting extra details, like the Haqqani network, which gave the impression he knows what he’s talking about. But there is a third level here, and that is what actually happened in the debate.

We can argue about the small points and the debating points. Romney went large, Obama went very, very small, shockingly small. Romney made a strategic decision not go after the president on Libya, or Syria, or other areas where Obama could accuse him of being a Bush-like war monger. Now I would have gone after Obama on Libya like a baseball bat, but that’s why Romney has won elections and I’ve never had to even contested them. He decided to stay away from the and I think that might have actually worked for him.

What he did concentrate on is the big picture. People don’t care what our policy on Syria is going to be. They care about how America is perceived in the world and how America carries itself in the world. And the high point is when he devastatingly leveled the charge of Obama going around the world on an apology tour. Obama’s answer was ask any reporter and they will tell you it wasn’t so. That’s about as weak an answer you can get. And Romney’s response to quote Obama saying that, ‘we dictate to other nations,’ and Romney said, ‘we do not dictate to other nations, we liberate them.’ And Obama was utterly speechless.

So that is the large picture, America is strong and respecting. What Obama did is he kept interrupting, interjecting and his responses were almost all very small, petty attacks. The lowest was when he’s talking about sanctions that are old. ‘When I was working on sanctions you were investing in a company in China.’ I mean that is the kind of attack you expect from a guy who is running for city council for the first time, that’s not what you expect from the president. A personal attack about an investment when talking about Iran?

I thought Romney had the day. He looked presidential. The president did not. And that’s the impression I think that is going to be left.


Jonathan Alter with a rebuttal:


And there you have it.


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68 Responses to The Hammer of Kraut: “It’s Unequivocal… Romney Won”

  1. wyntre says:

    Love Kraut. And he is spot on .

  2. myiq2xu says:

    Someone altered Jonathan’s mind.

    • carol haka says:

      I’ve heard that name before???? Didn’t he have something to do with some rag mag that went out of business??? 👿

  3. fif says:

    By reversing his views on war and peace, Romney has raised a character issue about his ability to be trusted as a steadfast defender of U.S.—
    Jonathan Alter (@jonathanalter) October 23, 2012

    Yea, because Obama has been a paragon of trust and inspiring leadership around the globe.

    • Mary says:

      I’ve been thinking a lot about your Obama point lately.

      The way he has behaved, arrogance, snotty looks, disdain, “zingers,” personal attacks….

      It is no wonder that Congress and The Prez no longer work together or cooperate, if this is how Obama treats people.

      “I won” is not a way to reach across the aisle and build coalitions to get things done. Not even in 8th grade.

      If these debates have achieved anything, they have achieved letting the American people see this man in his real character mode, sans teleprompter and Greek columns, and begin to see why and where the cooperation withdrawal/breakdown came from.

      And why a man of character like Mitt Romney now seems a breath of fresh air, a return to common decency and respect for differences without personal insults.

      Maybe I’m naive, but that’s how I see it.

      • britgirls says:

        I totally agree with you. If Obama wins then this kind of childish behavior will be applauded. And The White House is little better than a frat house.

        However, when Romney wins then we can get back to appreciating character, values and hard work. I’m going to drum the message into my kids: “Hey, this is what is meant by doing your homework. Obama just showed up at the first debate completely unprepared and disdainful of his opponent. Romney prepared for weeks (maybe months before) and was ready and now he’s the President. DO YOUR HOMEWORK, KIDS!”

      • AniEm says:

        Absolutely. And I hope that sets the tone for the nation. Right now we’re swamped by snarky little smart asses and I think that’s one thing Obama can take credit for. He’s the role model.

  4. totally agree with Krauthammer about Benghazi. As I said elsewhere, Romney has proven himself to be too smart and too skilled at debating (as well as having ample opportunity last night) for his decision to NOT bring up benghazi to be anything but deliberate. In other words, Rommey made a serious decision beforehand to not go there. Debatable perhaps, but I think, on the morning after, that it will turn to have been wise and far-thinking.

    • Lulu says:

      And Obama spent days being drilled on what to say and how to say it. Time wasted that could have been spent playing golf. This is why he got pissier and pissier because his game plan was thrown out the window by Romney. Obama cannot out-game him.

      • Lulu says:

        This is another way for Romney to screw with Obama’s head. He does not know how to predict what he will do. LOL

      • angienc says:

        Exactly — Libya was a trap for Romney & he was smart enough to see it coming.
        I know I said this before in the other thread, but Obama will literally revise history in front of our eyes (as his semantics game with “I called Benghazi a terrorist attack on day 1” lie from the last debate) & the MSM will cover for him. If Romney had taken the Libya bait (and you could see from Obama’s face he was chomping at the bit for Romney to take that bait) he would have damaged himself. He didn’t give Obama & the MSM that opportunity.

    • bluestate says:

      oh absolutely. it was totally strategic and i think it was a good call.

  5. DeniseVB says:

    So in Alter Liberalspeak, Obama “evolves” and Romney “flip-flops” ? Got it 😉

    Dr. Charles saw the same debate I did, Romney went big and presidential. Most of the points Obama “scored” were wrong, especially about the military (ships that go under water…submarines, really BO ?) and how bankruptcy works. But his fan base still loves him for being Chicago Fugly.

    • angienc says:

      Actually, submarines are classified as boats.
      The only ships that go underwater are those that sink.

    • Obama’s rude comment about there being enough boats was too much, & then comparing it to the un-necessity of the cavalry, as the Navy is conducting its “annual exercise” in the waters near Iran. I think it was PMM who said to watch for this. And our neighbor who is in the Naval reserves just was re-deployed to go over there.

      So it seems to me, Romney knew what he was talking about.

      BTW, isn’t there increasing incidents with PIRATES over there (Like those Somali pirates who took over a ship) and are barricading ports?

      • DeniseVB says:

        Obama was not only rude, but he was clueless. I forgot where I read it (maybe here on TCH??), but the first wave of going into Afghanistan in our initial post 9-11-01 attack, were special Army OPs on horses. I think even Sheldon on Big Bang Theory knew that 😉

  6. driguana says:

    Still, though, I’m a bit perplexed about the Benghazi issue…it cannot be swept under the rug. In a way, that might be what happens as a result of this last debate….it can’t be swept under the rug. I sincerely hope that Romney NOW will go after it big time because this in tandem with his command of the economic situation could really score big for him.

    • tommy says:

      driguana, yes, it can’t be swept under the rug. But I get the sense that O and his camp have successfully insinuated that R is using this issue just to win the election. That may be why R stepped back. If enough people believe that narrative, they may view R as sleazy, and thats counterproductive. Hopefully, when R actually wins, we may get full disclosure.

      • Lulu says:

        The Issa committee just got the requested information yesterday at 5:00 pm. Obama did not want new information in the debate but he wanted to use his old talking points but Romney did not bite. I do not think Romney needs it to win but Issa can drag Obama through the mud after losing.

    • angienc says:

      It’s not going to get swept under the rug but Romney didn’t want to go into the weeds without when Obama has proven he will shift his story to “win points” & the MSM will cover for him. But the story isn’t going away — that’s what congressional hearing are for — Jennifer Rubin has a good summary here:

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/post/obamas-libya-fiasco-will-be-harshly-judged/2012/10/23/b3ddfb48-1d06-11e2-ba31-3083ca97c314_blog.html

    • bluestate says:

      the media is covering it now so it wasn’t really necessary for romney to go into it in the debate

  7. 49erDweet says:

    Don’t like Kraut and trust him even less because of his bias against SP. He’s defending his guy here and is being useful, but he is not a TP friend. IMO.

    • votermom says:

      Yeah, he is more an establishment guy, but he’s been great at defending Romney, which is good.
      I think Romney himself is inherently more TP than people realize in that he has always been a fiscal “hawk.”

      • 49erDweet says:

        Hoping that, too. Time will tell. Gotta take the senate and retire Boehner. Maybe Secretary of Education? Just before that department is deep .sixed?

  8. tommy says:

    The Progs don’t get it. Romney ain’t a warmongering neoconservative, hes a moderate conservative. And he knows that our economy is sc***ed up, and wants to fix it. Wars the last thing on his mind. Another piece of news is that Rassie is going the Gallup way. Nate Silver will NOT be pleased. lol

  9. britgirls says:

    Most read at RCP last 24 hours:

    Romney Won Unequivocally
    – Charles Krauthammer, FOX News

    It’s Clear Which Candidate Is Behind
    – Erick Erickson, Red State

    Nate Silver’s Flawed Model
    – Josh Jordan, National Review

    Does Romney Now Have the Edge?
    – Chuck Todd & Jonathan Martin, MSNBC

    Preference cascade in full effect!

    • britgirls says:

      And most read last 7 days:

      Obama Campaign Looks Increasingly Worried
      – Philip Klein, DC Examiner

      Why Obama Is in Trouble in Ohio
      – Josh Jordan, National Review

      Obama’s Inner Circle Knows Defeat Lies Ahead
      – Hugh Hewitt, Townhall

  10. Krauthammer sometimes gets it right. He’s not exactly a broken watch, though.

    His account jibes with some of mine. http://peacocksandlilies.com/2012/10/23/its-over/

  11. angienc says:

    Romney made absolutely no gaffes in tonight’s debate. The President, however, made quite a few.

    For starters, those ships Obama doesn’t want to build are built in the swing state of Virginia and we still use bayonets.

    Obama’s biggest gaffe, though, was his utterly bizarre comments about how there will be no “sequester” and how he had nothing to do with it. Both assertions are simply not true. He signed the sequester into law and it is law…

    Debates are won in post-debate and Obama’s going to lose this one.

  12. threewickets says:

    Still puzzled by most of the debate reaction from the left and the right. Last night wasn’t close to my eyes, and I’m no conservative. One candidate looked and sounded like a world leader, the other looked and sounded like he was running for city council.

    • DM says:

      I very much agree with you. FP, unlike other issues, is a big picture debate. Obama was about small stuff. I really thought that he would perform better.

  13. tommy says:

    Whats wrong with Alter? Once upon a time, he used to be sane. Now the dudes just embarassing himself.

  14. Erica says:

    I just saw some of the clips from last night and realized that when he made his comment to Mitt that Mitt hadn’t had “the opportunity to actually implement foreign policy that he went on to use the same “you voted for the war” smear that he used on Hillary. What an a$$. His pattern of voting present, his big act that he didn’t “vote for the war” when he wasn’t even in office then, and his sneering condesension are really low and petty. I just hope a critical mass of voters is ready for a president that is informed, restrained, hardworking, and compassionate. I know I am.

  15. angienc says:

    And this sums up Obama’s closing argument with 2 weeks until the election:

  16. Chris Wallace agrees with Krauthammer. Obama looked like the challenger:

  17. tommy says:

    Hey Myiq, whats the record now? Last night would have got TCH loads of ‘hits’. And you plan to be knitting a sweater on D-day? Cos I predict that threads will be poppin’ all over TCH.

  18. angienc says:

    Did anyone catch the part of the debate when Obama said:

    “This nation. Me.”

    Meh — it was better in the original French. L’état, c’est moi.

    http://nation.foxnews.com/2012-presidential-debates/2012/10/23/obama-refers-nation-me

  19. tommy says:

    A change of gear. ‘A seven year old girl has become a classical music sensation after she composed her own opera, which was highly commended by the English National Opera. Alma Deutscher is not only an accomplished composer, she is also a skilled violinist and pianist. She started composing by the time she was five and wrote a sonata at the age of six. Videos of her work have been viewed more than 300,000 times since her father shared them on Youtube – and her abilities have led to comparisons with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who by 5, had mastered the keyboard and violin and started composing. Alma’s father realised his daughter had a connection with music when she was a baby. She was given her first violin for her 3rd birthday and in less than a year, she was playing Handel sonatas’.

  20. bluestate says:

    romney’s closing was brilliant. greta pointed out a key line. romney said to the american people, “i’ll work with you.” beautiful line. he was possessed by the spirit of ronald reagan in that closing, i swear.

    there was a moment when romney was really pleased – he couldn’t stop from smiling – and that was when obama left romney wide open to clarify his stance on the auto industry bankruptcy issue, because he didn’t think he’d ever get to address that again in the debates, since it was supposed to be all foreign policy, and in the previous debate, obama attacked him viciously over the bankruptcy question, and candy refused to let romney respond. i could tell he was thrilled that he was able to get that in there.

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