Who Won Presidential Debate: Romney Wins, Obama Loses, Debate Recap

This Wednesday, the world will be watching Mitt Romney and Barack Obama go head to head in a debate that may prove to be the most important in recent history. As the current global situation verges on catastrophe, the presidential debates will determine who leads America through our future challenges. 

As a Generation Y renaissance worker, I studied the humanities, trained as an archaeologist, worked in the sciences and am currently involved in social entrepreneurship. Throughout it all I have maintained a singular obsession with policy and how it impacts people’s lives. As a contributor at PolicyMic I cover political and economic issues and this live blog will provide up to the minute commentary and analysis of the presidential debates.  

Beginning on Wednesday, from 9:00-10:30 p.m. EDT, the first presidential debate will be broadcast live from all major news sources. Expect name-calling and rhetoric, but watch for real policy solutions to the current economic crisis. Mitt Romney will be hard-pressed to prove that free-market solutions can be effective at creating jobs for Americans. Barack Obama will have to defend the drastic expansion of government under his watch as well as soaring levels of national debt. More importantly, as his campaign falters, this may be Romney’s only chance to regain traction among skeptical voters, and although Obama will be heading into the debates strong, he will have to give substance to eloquence if he is to maintain his lead. 

Faced with an uncertain future and a dangerous course ahead, the outcomes of this election are of unique historical significance for America and the world. Let the debates begin!

PolicyMic will be covering the presidential debate live.  For live updates bookmark and refresh this page.

UPDATE: 11:36 PM I have a feeling the blogosphere will deem Romney the winner tonight.  That is, until tomorrow, when fact checking will show how empty his attacks were...

11:34 PM Crowd Mic: "Obama won, but he blew it.  He only won because Romney blew it even worse.  They both blew it."

11:30 PM Romney played a good hand tonight, even if it was a sleight of hand.  He kept on the offensive to avoid specifying his own murky policies.  A good tactic considering that he does not have any real policies to offer.  The problem is that he will get burned by fact checkers tomorrow when they find out how badly he misrepresented facts regarding Obamacare and the effects of tax cuts.

11:22 PM Crowd Mic: "The incumbent looked tired, like he didn't get any sleep last night..."

11:13 PM Crowd Mic: "Unfortunately, Romney won... he was better prepared, seemed like he had practiced a lot and Obama didn't look like he got enough sleep.  He looked really tired"

11:00 PM Crowd Mic: "It's not about winning... In fact these debates don't even matter...  The American Empire's time has run out....  Nothing either of what these candidates said matters much"

10:45 PM Crowd Mic: "I was undecided before, and I'm still undecided, but I think that Obama was more well-spoken and I just don't understand how Governor Romney proposes to create jobs..."

10:37 PM Crowd Mic:  "Obama!  Oh, he totally killed it!  I have the biggest crush on Obama!"

10:35 PM Crowd Mic: "Romney creamed him, absolutely creamed him, wasn't expecting it, but showed true leadership potential."

10:32 PM Romneybot keeps pulling out these jobs numbers.... he'll create 12 million new jobs?  How exactly?  No mention of any specifics during the debate.....

10:30 PM More rhetoric than substance, but a touching closing statement from Obamanator....

10:28 PM Wow, room lit up at Obama's pot shot....  Too bad he didn't really outline any philosophy regarding the government's role in the economy

10:26 PM Romney is right, people are suffering, there is a paralysis of government... but where are his proposals that will fix any of our problems?  

10:25 PM Why are the tweets on abc so pointless?

10:24 PM Oooh, Romney playing dirty, crowd is hissing... never heard a crowd hiss before... 

10:23 PM The rhetoric surrounding education is great, but neither candidate has any real solutions for making college affordable... not to mention the student loan debt crisis as well as the lack of jobs that graduates are facing....  It is a looming fiscal and human disaster.....  Make them give proposals Jim!

10:20 PM Crowd liked when Romney was expounding on the American Dream...  The cynicism in the room is palpable....

10:16 PM The anti-government sentiment does not even make sense....  The government is the only institution the public has influence over.... private institutions are not accountable to the public except throught government intervention.....  

10:15 PM  Government has not taken over the healthcare system, in fact it has not done enough to regulate healthcare providers as well as pharma companies and that is why there are soaring costs, leading to the current crisis we are facing

10:13 PM Reagan ran record deficits, expanded military, oversaw S+L scandal and crash....  Republicans should really get over their Reagan Religion....  It doesn't jive with facts

10:10 PM That's scary, Romney just said he would let the markets provide coverage for young people....  It's already been tried, and that is why the Affordable Care Act was necessary....  Markets fail when it comes to health insurance....  That's why Romney reformed Mass healthcare system... BTW Government has not taken over Healtcare...

10:05 PM Woodward and Suskind's book portray Obama as being a lousy negotiater....  Depict him as incapable of bipartisan cooperation despite his rhetoric...

10:01 PM Uh oh, did he really go there?  Crowd loved that one, in fact a lady keeps cat calling every sentence Obama makes....  Taking it way back to Massachusetts land

10:00 PM Ah, so the real issue comes to the forefront, RISING HEALTHCARE COSTS!!!!  Something that is hindering the recovery, devastating our budget and gouging the middle class....  

9:53 PM Wow!  Interesting twist, Romney is right, Obama and the Democrats have not only treated Wall St with kid gloves, but Wall St banks are back to the reckless behavior and soaring profits of pre-2009...  Obama has not initiated real Wall St reform, despite his rhetoric....

9:50 PM Obama's going to cream Romney here... a voucher system is insane and would create chaos...  The problems with healthcare don't stem from Medicare, it is from rising healthcare costs...  Romney better steer clear of this issue, especially after it was discovered that Ryan's healthcare plan was fraudulent

9:45 PM Romney better be careful since the CBO's own analysis has confirmed that Obamacare is fiscally balanced....  He's taking cheap shots by misrepresenting the facts

9:41 PM Spot on... Medicare is sustainable, so long as corruption and waste is cut out of the system....  Data suggests Medicare provides better coverage than private insurers

9:39 PM Romney's been practicing, but Obama's got that look in his eye...

9:37 PM  If Obama is aware as to the extent of corporate welfare, why has it not changed?

9:33 PM  The obsession with deficits are a distraction right now...  Deficit spending is necessary during recessions.... public investment will create returns in the long-term....  Cutting spending right now is dangerous and could derail the recovery

9:28 PM Whoa, end PBS?  Nobody likes that.... Crowd went wild...  Bad move Romneybot

9:25 PM When will it finally be understood that tax cuts won't create jobs.... The private sector is deleveraging, that extra cash does not go to spending/investment

9:21 PM Crowd loved the Trump zing... maybe the networks should get him to mediate the next debate

9:20 PM How can Obama promise middle class tax cuts when he is proposes increases in government spending?  

9:14 PM Romney has changed his tune regarding taxes.  Had to happen since his previous position was pure fantasy.....  Interesting that both candidates want to reduce corporate tax rates....  American corporations are sitting on record amounts of cash, not sure why they need more money.... 

9:12 PM Much applause for Obama's investment in education and mention of renewable energy sources.  Investments, however, will burden middle class through higher debt.... unfortunately it is a necessary burden since markets seem unable to provide a recovery

9:07 PM Romney has yet to fully explain how he will make this country energy independent, especially when the cost of tapping into the energy resources he assumes we can use will cost more than current sources.  Assumption being markets will not determine his energy policy

9:05 PM How exactly can a candidate explain how he will fix the economy in two minutes?

 9:02 PM Here we go! 

8:53 PM Crowd Mic:  [Irish accent] "Obama seems like he can lead, but Romney.... he acts like he is made out of plastic.... really, it's weird"

8:46 PM Crowd Mic:  "I'm not so sure 'bout neither of these jokers... but don't think Romney can hold no wudder [brooklyn-speak for water]..."

8:40 PM After a brief survey of the crowd, the majority are already decided for Obama.... however, a few people were still undecided.  However, despite their status, they are wary of Romney and leaning towards Obama.  Romney better have a bold strategy for tonight to sway them back towards his direction

8:30 PM Presidential Debate Live from Galapagos Art Place, Brooklyn NY

6:30 PM  CNNMoney is reporting that Romney is already backtracking on the scale of his promised tax breaks.  No surprise there.  His vague plan and Ryan's now infamous fairytale budget never quite explained how they would make those tax breaks revenue neutral.  Hopefully he's questioned on this and forced to clearly explain something for the first time in this campaign...  

6:10 PM As an aside, there really should be a third party participating in tonight's debates.  Since the parties and the networks have such close ties, these debates usually avoid hard questions and instead focus on personality or inconsequential things like that.  When third party candidates participate they tend to open up the discussion to issues that actually matter.  I assume that is why the Commission on Presidential Debates established the 15% rule, so that they could monopolize the debates and avoid any threats from third party candidates.  On the other hand, the current situation in this country is so dire that maybe Jim Lehrer will pitch the candidates a couple fast balls.

5:45 PM Benjamin Feinblum just published an interesting piece on PolicyMic pointing out that recent polling data suggests that Obama has a strong lead over Romney in battleground states.  More importantly, the polls suggest that voters believe that Obama has a better grasp of the economic problems people are currently facing.  Romney will have to make a strong case for his market based approach if he is to sway these voters.  It will be interesting to see if he holds the party line, or softens his stance on deficits and entitlements...

5:00 PM Will be covering the battle... er debate from the Galapagos Art Space in Brooklyn NYC.....  Supposedly 300 people will be attending....  Better than a football game

4:53 PM The news so far has it that Mitt Romney has been in Colorado for the last day prepping for the debate.  He's going to need it!  Especially after his own campaign admitted that he will have a hard time keeping his own against Obama.