Archive for Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Group at Dole applies dials to Romney, Obama during debate

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama answers questions during the first presidential debate at the University of Denver, Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, in Denver. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama answers questions during the first presidential debate at the University of Denver, Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012, in Denver. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

October 3, 2012


When Republican Mitt Romney said he would cut government funding to Public Broadcasting Service, a group of undecided and independent voters at the Dole Institute of Politics watching the first presidential debate moved their dials way down.

The 14 people were holed up in a room, moving individual dials to show how they felt about everything President Barack Obama and Romney said during the 90-minute debate that was held Wednesday at the University of Denver.

Outside the room, more than a 100 people sat and watched the debate on a large screen and followed the focus group's dial movements superimposed on the screen.

After the debate, Kansas University associate professor Mary Banwart asked the group members why they disapproved of Romney's verbal shot at PBS. "I thought that was a stupid move," Kathie Stovall of Lawrence said as others around the table nodded in agreement. Stovall said she supported PBS.

Banwart also noted that during the debate, the group seemed to grade Romney down the more aggressive he became in pointing out differences between himself and Obama, than they did when Obama did the same thing to Romney.

Elaine Grosser of Eudora, and a registered Republican, said she felt Obama did a better job of explaining himself than Romney, and she said that she did not appreciate Romney's remarks that were publicized last month about 47 percent of the population being dependent on the government and in Obama's column.

"I don't think he is in touch with us," Grosser, 68, said of Romney. Her husband, Stewart, 73, and retired from the Navy, said he was undecided about who to support. He agreed with Obama on some issues, but added, "He (Obama) seems to hit a brick wall with Congress." Later, he said he felt himself agreeing with Obama more during the debate. "I felt like Obama was giving stronger answers," he said.

Ashley Fielder, a senior accounting major at Kansas University, was in the focus group and said she appreciated Romney's

business-like approach to certain issues.

Outside the focus group room, Abby Hughes, a sophomore at KU, watched the debate on the big screen and remained undecided. "I don't think it swayed me, but it informed me," she said. Chris Lyons, also a KU student, agreed. He said he wasn't going to decide who to vote for based on a debate, but would study the candidates' positions.

Bill Lacy, director of the Dole Institute, said he believed both Romney and Obama did well. "I don't think there was a clear winner," he said.


Liberty275 5 years, 7 months ago

"This is what happens when u pick John Kerry as your debate coach" - Michael Moore.

Steve Stucky 5 years, 7 months ago

Number one. Bill Lacy, go to or or, read the headlines. Then get yourself a gallon of scotch. Number two. The token Republican of the 14 dial twisters needs to read number one.

But hey, if all you can hang your hat on is pbs funding then why not go for that?

Pepe 5 years, 7 months ago

Yes. He is always ridiculously biased but this article makes it sound like he was watching some other debate altogether.

Alexander Smith 5 years, 7 months ago

Larry, I hate to blow it to you but go re-read the CNN Results. The numbers the posted was a random sample, (meaning the put their fingers in a hate and grabbed) and it was only 430 people?? WTF? This by no means a true sample of the publics views, if you beleive this I have some prime beach fron property to sell you in the Mojave desert. When they showed the polls of the "unregistered viewers" the result was 52/48 I believe in favor of Romney. For the poll to be valid the sample should of been 100s of thousands.. not 430. Its bad media like this that gives bad results.

Granted though, Romney did do well. Also, who would the public believe. A group of college proffesors and students at a univeristy OR YOU who thinks a news channel is the all saying?

I would go with the College not you. You are what peole call a grocery-line-check-out-voter. Basically people that are to lazy to actually research the issues so put their faith in the tabloids.

kappelmon 5 years, 7 months ago

Larry, you just got OWNED.

By the way - this is not a "winners" debate. Debate in high schools and colleges have clear winners. This was like a radical version of Dr. Phil's talk show - Mitt is the naive kid who's excited because he thinks he can make big changes in President Obama's position - President Obama is the elder brother who understands the difficulties of partisan politics and has some real plans that will take some real time to come to fruition.

CreatureComforts 5 years, 7 months ago

Never mind the fact that I am originally from the state where Romney was once the Gov...I dislike the guy greatly. I won't be voting for him. But I'll tell you one thing - I am sure as heck more likely to vote for him today than I was yesterday. Probably won't vote for either guy though.

It was practically uncomfortable just watching Obama at times. Really a shocker.

whatever95 5 years, 7 months ago

I felt the same way about Obama. He looked pissed and uncomfortable to me. I will be voting for Romney to send a message. Obama had 4 years to fix a few things he talked about last night, and he couldn't accomplish much because of attitudes with Republicans. THIS NEEDS TO STOP - I liked that Romney said he will work with Democrats FOR the people. Of course, that is to be determined down the road.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 7 months ago

"I will be voting for Romney to send a message."

What message is that? That we need to return to the plutocratic policies of BushCo that got us where we are to begin with?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 7 months ago

A lot of them were, but BushCo doubled down on those policies, and that's why we are where we are. Romney would not only keep us there, but make things even worse.

gravitykills 5 years, 7 months ago

Dodd and Frank and the congress were the real players in the 4th quarter prior to the housing crash. Bush's problem was he just set there on the sidelines watching. So yeah, you can blame him. But you can also blame congress.

Briseis 5 years, 7 months ago

I hope for more of the same. I hate change.

Kathy Theis-Getto 5 years, 7 months ago

I would be pissed, too, if a rude, greasy car salesman lied to me, the audience and the American people

tomatogrower 5 years, 7 months ago

Well, whatever, he is busy running a country. Romney is unemployed.

gccs14r 5 years, 7 months ago

The last thing we need is more Republicans. They've been making a mess of things since '68.

I miss Tim Russert.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 7 months ago

I agree. There's no reason to even have the election now. Let's just call it off and declare Romney president. And why wait till January 20 to swear him in? Can the Obamas have their crap out of the White House by the end of next week?

MarcoPogo 5 years, 7 months ago

"He got beat like a red-headed step child! "

Out of curiosity, what is your exact stance on beating red-headed step children?

MarcoPogo 5 years, 7 months ago

Somebody's sarcasm detector isn't working today. Must have lost power during all that copying and pasting while doing what the kids refer to as "Pulling a Merrill".

MarcoPogo 5 years, 7 months ago

Ah, I'm just funning Sage. Everybody else seems to like teasing him so I thought I'd go for a chuckle...and in response, he called me young! So, I guess I win!

MarcoPogo 5 years, 7 months ago

My youth! Now I can go party at The Hawk!

mycatsrightorwrong 5 years, 7 months ago

Means testing social security, limiting tax deductions, protecting education, no demonizing the poor, and all while talking about private sector solutions. God, I wish Kansas still had some moderate Republicans, I forgot what they sounded like.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 7 months ago

Except that almost none of that would happen in a way that benefits the average American, especially if there is a Republican-held Senate and House.

mycatsrightorwrong 5 years, 7 months ago

And I get that. I know a Romney presidency would be center-right negotiating with the batsh*t crazy, heartless, sociopath accountants in Congress. But damn, it was nice to be reminded that some part of the GOP still gives a damn about the common American, and exist in reality.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 7 months ago

Robert Reich had a good column about the fact that Romney's biggest problem is that he has to run as the GOP candidate, and the GOP has become "batsh*t crazy, heartless, sociopath accountants" to use your words to paraphrase Reich.

mycatsrightorwrong 5 years, 7 months ago

Thanks bozo... thought I'd post it (

The Republican primaries, and then the Republican convention, have shown America a party far removed from the “compassionate conservatism” the GOP tried to sell in 2000. Instead, we have a party that’s been taken over by Tea Partiers, nativists, social Darwinists, homophobes, right-wing evangelicals, and a few rich people whose only interest is to become even wealthier.

These regressives were there in 2000, to be sure. They lurked in the GOP in the 1990s, when Newt Gingrich took over the House. They were there in the 1980s, too, although Ronald Reagan’s sunny disposition gave them cover. In truth, they’ve been part of the GOP for more than half a century — but never before have they held so much sway in the party, never before have they called the shots.

gravitykills 5 years, 7 months ago

Serious! That's what you got from his speech? Come on.

tomatogrower 5 years, 7 months ago

Question: I agree Romney couldn't put out his whole plan out in 2 minutes, but where is his plan? It could be typed up and put on his position site, but I don't see it anywhere. On his site there are a few more details, but just in short sentences. He wants to repeal "Obamacare", but he doesn't say what he would do to replace it. I realize people have short attention spans, but I and many people I know want details.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 7 months ago

If he were to honestly provide concrete details of his plans (assuming he actually has any) he'd be lucky to even carry red states like Kansas.

tomatogrower 5 years, 7 months ago

Oh, and by the way, Sagey, Romney does know how things really work. He or his accountant has used plenty of those loopholes that make it profitable to move companies to other countries, which he claims don't exist. It's one way he got so rich, and why a lot of his money isn't in a good US bank. Of course, he can be like Brownback, and plead innocence for his lack of knowledge. "I was just doing what my accountant thought best. I didn't know about the loopholes. It's all his fault. But I built this company and my money on my own. Don't forget that. My accountant and employees are just flunkies. I never needed any of the them."

jafs 5 years, 7 months ago

I guess Romney is a fool then, for voluntarily paying more than he had to last year.

tomatogrower 5 years, 7 months ago

You don't pay taxes on all the profits that you earn off shore, until you bring them onshore. And as we know, there are a whole lot of banks on little islands that will happily keep your money for you. Thus, having fewer deposits in US banks, thus not having enough money to loan to small business. Which is ok, because one of those small businesses might start competing with your company.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 5 years, 7 months ago

I completely disagree with the CNN take. I think Romney looked like a bobblehead. It would seem to the Repuvlican "candidate" had his underwear on backwards. Eyes fluttering, head bobbing, acting like a cat on a hot tin roof. But then again, I do not vote much in Kansas, it is an exercise in tea bag soaked Kansas politics.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 5 years, 7 months ago

Sorry, I meant to say"exercise in futility". My bad.

Centerville 5 years, 7 months ago

I got a kick out of Romney, as he stated facts, staring right at Zip, who was afraid to look up. Poor Jim Leherer, as unwelcome at future lib get-togethers as the poor sap who asked Scott Brown why he was willing to sit in "Ted Kennedy's seat."

Flap Doodle 5 years, 7 months ago

Let's hope they strap the high capacity Depends on Biden before his debate or it might get ugly.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 7 months ago

Mr. Romney dusted off the old Etch-a-Sketch last night, he did. Some interesting new ideas. They do not fit the Republican platform, however.

mycatsrightorwrong 5 years, 7 months ago

Obama sucked last night, for sure. But what did you right wing sociopaths think of some of things Romney said? Regulate Wall Street, eliminate most tax deductions for the wealthy, force insurance companies to cover those with pre-existing conditions, protecting education, no demonizing the poor moochers, and not touching social security... this can't be the candidate for the entitled business class who are convinced they're creative gods, who've never been helped by others labor, consumers, public education, cops, or roads. I thought your policy to get rid of rats was to stop feeding them? The Kansas GOP wants to destroy the safety net, public education, and funding for roads, b/c no one is entitled to anything as a citizen, they're only entitled to what the value of their labor is.

I guess what I'm saying is, you can cheer Romney all you want, but he wasn't your candidate last night... he was the candidate for people that care about others e.g. normally functioning, social human beings.

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