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Live-Blogging Insiders: Romney-Obama Debate Didn't Measure Up

A group of Patch's New York political insiders disappointed by Wednesday's debate in Denver.

A panel made up of several of New York's political insiders were hoping for specifics on policy during the first presidential debate. 

The panelists who took part in a live blog on Patch during the debate were, in many cases, left disappointed. 

"So far this debate is the worst presidential debate I've ever seen...from both sides...neither candidate is resonating," said Steve Behar, a former NYC Council and State Assembly candidate and Democratic consultant, as the debate was winding down. 

Paul Feiner, the Greenburgh Town supervisor, said the debate lacked excitement. 

"Obama's performance is good but no one relates to the average voter who are not policy wonks like Bill Clinton did," said Feiner, a Democrat. "I wonder what percent of the American people who are somewhat interested in politics are paying attention to the entire debate. Bill Clinton simplified the issues–he made it easy for the average person to understand his vision."

At one point in the debate, Mitt Romney claimed that Obama's stimulus bill poured $90 million into green energy companies. “Now I like green energy as well, but that’s about 50 years of what the oil and gas industry received," the former Massachusetts governor said. 

That stirred up our panelists. 

"Come on Romney, opposed to green energy too?!" wrote Ede Fox, a Democratic candidate for the NYC Council. 

Betty Manzella, the vice-chair of the Brookhaven Town Republicans, said Romney was making a fair point. 

"Seriously?" Manzella said. "When did he say he was opposed to green energy? He said he was opposed to putting $90 billion into FAILED green energy companies."

Several panelists said they wanted to hear specifics on Romney's tax policy. 

"OK, I'll agree that middle-class people are being crushed," said Laura Morris, a Pelham Village trustee. "Will we hear anything specific from Romney on how he would fix this?"

Peter Swiderski, the Democratic mayor of the Village of Hastings-on-Hudson, said: "Romney is well-prepared. He's sounding competent and knowledgeable but is avoiding specifics on what deductions and loopholes will be covered."

On other topics, though, including health care, Swiderski said the candidates may have been too wonky for their own good. 

"I recognize that knowledgeable answers are great - but they both feel like they're overkilling it on substance and want to to show what they know," he said. 

Kevin Brady, who is running on the Working Families line for State Assembly in Nassau County, said judging the debate a draw was a win for Romney. 

"Was hoping for raucous or sharp contrast here and we got neither," Brady said. "We got this weird stasis, combined with a slowing of momentum of the D side."

How do you think the candidates did on addressing the major issues? Share your thoughts in the comments section below. 

Francis T McVetty October 07, 2012 at 11:28 AM
Come on Ryan, Romney was far more specific than Obama. Obama has been if office for almost four years and just what HAS he accomplished in regard to the economy? Maybe these are the specifics you should be writing about?

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