Voters in a Patch poll of Maryland believe President Barack Obama swung and missed in Wednesday night's opening debate, with more than 80 percent saying they believe Republican challenger Mitt Romney emerged the victor.
We want to hear your reactions to the first debate and two of Gaithersburg's City Council Members and a local delegate weighed in.
Council Vice President Ryan Spiegel:
Like Chuck Todd, I was struck by the civility of the debate and the genuine focus on issues and policy differences — perhaps the first such presidential debate since they started being televised. There really weren't any personal attacks or zingers. It was a respectful, albeit passionate disagreement about visions for our future and about policy details. That's what a debate is supposed to be.
Setting aside all the talk of winners and losers, and whether certain assertions were entirely factual, it made me proud to see the candidates taking the high road and concentrating on their policy ideas for how to move our country forward.
Council Member Cathy Drzyzgula:
Clearly the biggest loser was Jim Lehrer, who totally lost control of the debate in the first segment. I found both performances rather uninspiring, with so many repeats of the same language and nothing to get excited about. Maybe I’ll vote for Big Bird.
Del. Aruna Miller (D-Dist. 15)
Governor Romney's rhetoric during the debate was hypocrisy at best. He repeatedly stated how he cares about helping small businesses, creating jobs and helping the middle class. Yet, his past performance with Bain Capital, recent remarks on the 47 percent of the population, proposed regressive policies of his running mate present a different Mitt Romney. The only solution he offered to reducing the deficit is to cut Public Television...I say lose Romney and keep Big Bird.
SPEAK OUT: What were your impressions of the first Presidential debate? Was there a clear winner/loser? What surprised you or left you disappointed? Tell us in the comments.
Editor's Note: This article was updated at 10 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 8, to include comment from Del. Miller.