Everyone from the left to the right thinks Mitt Romney smoked President Obama in last night's debate, but how will that translate to the polls? Nate Silver of the New York Times says it's possible he could see a gain of about 3 points, about as high as these things get. He likens it to Romney kicking a field goal, which makes more sense when you recall that Silver had Romney down by a touchdown before the debate. Romney hasn't tied the game, but he's set "himself up in such a way that his comeback chances have improved by a material amount."
A sampling of other opinions today:
- Roger Simon, Politico: "It’s not that Romney’s performance was perfect or polished—it wasn’t—it’s just that Obama’s was so mediocre. ... I think he was just overtired or over-distracted or over-something. But he sure wasn’t over-energetic."
- Ben Smith, BuzzFeed: Romney's biggest task was to prove "he could stand on stage with President Barack Obama as an equal and a plausible president of the United States." Check.
- Matt Miller, Washington Post: Well played, Romney. Miller expected him to track to the middle more quickly after the primaries, but maybe this is better. "If he wins, of course, Romney and his advisers will be hailed as geniuses for their timing, for bonding the party faithful to the ticket with the choice of Paul Ryan and a conservative-themed convention, and then dashing to the center for the home stretch."