Well, last night we got to see the real Mitt Romney. The storm-the-boardroom guy who smiled as he ran companies into the ground at Bain.
Obama's problem is that he doesn't like street-fighting, and that's why he has lost against Congress, and that's why, last night, he lost against Mitt.
The thing about Romney is, he is facile at being all things to all people. He is able to promise no tax cuts at the debate, and then speak at a corporate fundraiser and assure them (after checking for mikes I would assume) that he's got their backs.
The irony of the night was when the two candidates became one, over health care. They were both responsible for the health care we have now, Romney in Massachusetts and Obama for the rest of us. They both love it. They took turns delineating all the wonderful features of the plan, and swearing how they wouldn't change a thing. Obama was so thrown by the Romney shape-shifting routine that he wasn't able to address the fact that leaving it to the states would give Massachusetts (blue state) a great plan, and throw anyone in a red state under the bus.
That was the most stark example, but throughout the night I was put in mind of an old Popeye cartoon:
Obama is going to need to actually be a couple of steps ahead of Romney for the next debate, because Romney wants the presidency far more than Wimpy wanted a hamburger. The first thing he needs to do is replace John Kerry with someone who is quick on his feet and knows how to say anything to get what he wants. I know that's harder to find among the Dems, so he may have to look on the other side.
The other thing Obama needs to do is get angry, pull the mask off Romney's face to show the audience that guy that criticized the British for their competence in hosting the Olympics, the guy who will attack Palestine in order to pander to Israel while stirring the flames of hate. You know, the guy that doesn't feel he needs to take care of the lazy 47%.
As Popeye says, "You can steal me looks, but not me goil."