Obama And Romney Debate: President 'Fluffed' It, 'Should Have Sent Michelle' Commentators Say

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Those who managed to stay up until 2am - and that's just when it began - to watch the first presidential debate came to the same conclusion - Mitt Romney won.

Labour MP Diane Abbott, a supporter of the president, was evidently disappointed by what she saw, tweeting: "Obama should have sent Michelle".

"Whoever prepared Obama for this debate should be sacked. They did nothing to curb his professorial tendencies," she added.

Nick Robinson, the political editor of the BBC, concluded: "Clear Romney victory - more energy, less wonk-ish & sharper than Obama but will it matter?"

While the broadcaster's veteran political presenter Andrew Neil observed: "Widespread consensus that Romney won first debate comfortably. Let's see what it does to polls."

Catherine Meyer, the Europe editor of Time magazine added: "There's remarkable unanimity on that judgment. Obama comprehensively fluffed it."

Alex Massie in The Spectator magazine was damning about Obama's performance:

Everyone says that the debates don’t change the dynamics of a presidential race very often. President Barack Obama better hope that remains the case this year. Last night’s debate wasn’t even close. Mitt Romney thumped Obama in Denver. It was, as they say, an old-fashioned ass-kicking. Any Democrat who pretends otherwise is either deluding themselves or trying to kid you.

While Gary Younge in the The Guardian was equally critical of how the president handled the night:

In the end there were no zingers; no knockout blows; no major blunders. But there was a winner: Mitt Romney. After several reboots and roll-outs he finally, finally found his voice. He wasn't likeable, but he was believable. Gone were the gaffes, the stiff, wooden persona and the excessive caution. He came out fighting and he kept on swinging.

Barack Obama on the other hand appeared nervous, distracted and unprepared. After four years in the Oval Office, he'd lost his voice. Gone was the charisma, the optimism and the eloquence. Defensive, halting and verbose – he looked tired and that made his presidency look tired. Both campaigns set low expectations, but only Obama met them. If you were watching without knowing who was the president, you wouldn't have guessed it was him.

Others watching who had been surprised on Wednesday as Labour leader Ed Miliband gave the speech of his political life noted the unlikely contrast with Obama's performance.

"Obama soundly beaten in presidential debate. It's like I've always said, when it comes to public speaking he's no Ed Miliband," joked Tom Jamieson.

Richard Brooks added: "Have we just entered a world where Ed Miliband is a better media performer than Obama? Does it rain upwards too?"

Also on The Huffington Post

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