FROM Susan Estrich
Taking Stock of the First Debate In last night's debate , Mitt Romney was an aggressive challenger, not afraid to accuse a sitting President of not telling the truth. The consensus is that an aggressive Romney won the debate against Barack Obama , a President who was defensive and lacking in energy. We sample early reaction and ask how it might influence the remaining month of a close and hard-fought campaign.
Will Last Night's Debate Change the Momentum? In Colorado this morning, President Obama gave an energetic stump speech, but even Democrats agree he was uninspired in last night's debate compared to Mitt Romney . Republicans are cheering Romney's aggressive performance, and both sides are wondering why the President failed to seize several obvious opportunities. Was he out of practice? Was it part of his campaign strategy? Will a different Obama turn up the next time around? In the meantime, can Romney use positive news coverage to establish a lead among potential American voters?
Is Newt Gingrich Another Flash in the Pan? It's only January, and already the race for the Republican presidential nomination feels like it's gone on forever and that it might never end. Newt Gingrich clobbered Mitt Romney Saturday in South Carolina , and it turns out that Romney didn't really win Iowa after all. The Florida primary is just nine days away, with candidates raising the rhetorical volume before tonight's 18th debate in Tampa. There are four candidates left ( Rick Santorum and Ron Paul are the other two) and no real front-runner. We get the latest.
Mitt vs. Newt: Establishment vs. Grass Roots Insurgency South Carolina demonstrated there's no real front-runner in the GOP race for the Republican nomination. Maybe there never was. Newt Gingrich now leads Mitt Romney in Florida polls with nine days left until the next primary and with candidates raising the rhetorical volume before tonight's 18th debate in Tampa. Gingrich is still calling Romney a "Massachusetts liberal" and, in a message to voters old enough to remember Gingrich as House Speaker, Romney says Gingrich "had to resign in disgrace." Rick Santorum and Ron Paul are still nipping away, but how much longer can this go on, as establishment Republicans try to cope with right-wing populism?
Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Convention The latest foreign policy challenge comes amid talk of " Obama fatigue " and new attention's being paid to the role of Hillary Clinton at the Democrats' nominating convention in Denver. Clinton has not taken steps to quash a move to place her name in nomination two weeks from now in Denver. The result would dramatize that the Democratic Party is still divided.
GOP 'Nukes' the Senate filibuster on SCOTUS nominees Senate Democrats today blocked Judge Neil Gorsuch's appointment to the US Supreme Court… but just for the moment. The Republican majority has changed the rules to force a likely confirmation as soon as tomorrow.
Truth and Lies in Trumpland Donald Trump is using mis-information like no President has before him. It's an unprecedented challenge to the news media, and a potential threat to democracy. We hear how the "leader of all the people" is dividing Americans and confusing the rest of the world.
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.