While it is widely felt that Mitt Romney won the debate against Barack Obama, with as many as 67% thinking he did so, it remains to be seen exactly if the Republican presidential nominee win will reflect in the polls and the state of the race.
The debate itself was mediocre and Romney didn’t do extraordinary, he merely did better than the president. While Romney’s performance certainly helped keep his campaign afloat, it remains to be seen if this is the comeback story he is hoping for.
So far, things aren’t looking too good for Romney. In post-debate polls Barack Obama is still 3.5% above him nationally and is beating him in all but one swing state. Part of the issue is that just because someone thinks you won a debate it doesn’t mean you won his or her vote. People are already familiar with Romney and Obama and the differences between them. No one is going to suddenly decide they like less financial regulation just because you have a good on stage demeanor.
Mitt does have an advantage in that there are nearly two weeks before the next presidential debate. While there is a vice presidential debate in between, Obama still has to have the next two weeks filled with questions on his debate competence putting him on the defensive for a change. If they can continue this for every debate it could have an impact on the actual race if they can cast Obama as unarticulated and unprepared. After the last debate, though, it’s wise to think the Obama camp has learned its lesson and is going to try a new approach.
There is the possibility that the debate really did mark a turning point and Romney is going to make a comeback. It might just take a while to reflect in the polls. But the odds are stacked pretty high against the former governor of Massachusetts. He’s probably going to need more than a good debate performance to turn it around.