Patch Flash Poll Results: Romney Won Presidential Debate, CA Political Insiders Largely Agree

While the verdict in our Red and Blue California survey fell mostly along party lines, even Democrats found few good things to say about Obama’s showing.


California political insiders on both sides of the spectrum came away from Wednesday night’s presidential debate underwhelmed by President Barack Obama’s performance, with more than two-thirds of respondents to a Patch survey saying Mitt Romney carried the evening.

Patch sent a quick, unscientific poll to our roster of Democratic and Republican party activists in the hours immediately following the debate; 24 Republicans and 15 Democrats responded.

Eighty-eight percent of Republicans said Romney had won the debate by a wide margin, while none dubbed Obama the winner.

“Romney was poised, calm and presidential,” one Republican said. “Obama was a deer in the headlights and looked scared.”

While 40 percent of Democratic respondents said Obama had won, a full third gave the victory to Romney, and the remaining 27 percent were neutral.

“Where was my President?! He was not present,” one Democrat lamented.

“The surge is to Romney,” said another.

Disappointment with the president’s performance didn’t stop Democrats from criticizing Romney’s lack of specific policy proposals on issues like healthcare and cutting the deficit.

“Romney doesn't even know the details of his plans. He'll find that out when he gets his marching orders from the Republican leadership when he meets with [them] after his inauguration,” a third Democrat quipped.

But Republican insiders disagreed, saying Romney was “in command” and “knew his facts and information.”

Ninety-two percent of Republicans said the debate would give a leg up to Romney’s campaign, which has struggled in recent weeks, while 60 percent of Democrats said the same of their candidate.

Respondents from both parties agreed that media pundits would crown Romney the victor.  And they found something else to agree upon, too:  the evening’s other loser.

“The loser in the debate was the moderator [PBS’s Jim Lehrer] who lost control of the format,” said one Republican, voicing an opinion also expressed by several Democrats. “However, that led to a better format of each candidate responding to the other’s statements in real time.”

The two candidates will meet again Oct. 16 in Hempstead, New York, where they’ll answer audience questions on foreign and domestic policy.

Who do you think dominated Wednesday’s debate? How do you think it will affect the election? Tell us in the comments.


The Red and Blue California Surveys

Our surveys are not a scientific random sample of any larger population, but rather an effort to listen to a swath of influential local Republican and Democratic activists, party leaders and elected officials in California. 

Patch will be conducting Red California and Blue California surveys throughout 2012 in hopes of determining the true sentiment of Republicans and Democrats on the ground in California.

Do you want to weigh in on Patch surveys? If you are an activist, party leader or elected official and would like to take part in a weekly survey that lasts just a few minutes, please email Patch editor Sandra Oshiro.

Xxxxxxx October 04, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Mitt Romney was presidential and gave details of his 5 point approach towards job growth. he was very specific about taxes. he will not increase taxes and cares about the middle class. my vote goes for Mitt Romney. pres. Obama looked scared, tired and could not defend his failed record of past four years. He could not fight his own battle and kept repeating Bill Clinton's record. he has wasted tax payers money on Solyndra and unwanted programs.
Amy October 05, 2012 at 01:24 AM
Romney clearly won the debate last night. He held his ground and covered everything that was asked. An an independent, he gets my vote.
S allen October 05, 2012 at 03:05 AM
Go Romney!! Lets get some leadership in the White House !! What I hated most about the debate was the sly smirk Obama had while. Romney was speaking It was unprofessional and disgusting!!
Sue October 05, 2012 at 03:58 AM
Romney was clearly the winner despite the fact that on several occasions Obama droned on and on beyond the 2 minute time limit. Watch it again and time both candidates. Mr. Romney stuck to the 2 minute limit and was even cut off after 32 seconds at times while Obama kept blabbing without specifically answering the questions and went beyond his 2 minute limit practically every time he spoke. When he spoke directly to the American people he was particularly invasive as usual. I am so tired of seeing his face on TV, in our kids classrooms, in commercials... He only wants attention and glory, not service to our country. There is a spiritual battle facing the nation just as much as a political one. Watch the video at www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-TMKUea87E and you will see what I mean. All Christians, please fast and pray because if Obama remains in office our country will literally be on the track of evil.


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