Here's a sampling:
"I'm stunned. I just can not believe that the president came out so ill-prepared, lack of passion, whatever you want to call it.... I think he was trying to be too cautious and I think it hurt him last night.
He sounded more like a college professor than a president. And that's what really stunned me.... he didn't have the kind of responses Romney had and I think it hurt him"
-Prof Bruce Bryski, Political Science & Communications Dept.. Buffalo State College
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"Challenger Mitt Romney used Wednesday's debate to put President Barack Obama on the defensive on health care, jobs and other issues. The president's reluctance to fire back harshly gave new hope to Republican partisans."
The 90-minute debate in Denver may have been too wonky to captivate millions of American viewers and change the campaign's overall arc. Polls show Obama leading in key battleground states.
But it delighted Republicans who felt Romney was the aggressor without going overboard, and who were surprised by Obama's cautious, at times listless demeanor.
Even some Democratic partisans grudgingly acknowledged that Romney had a good debate.
"I think he won, unfortunately," said Karl Amelchenko, 36, a lawyer from Raleigh, N.C., who supports Obama. "Romney was aggressive. He attacked." READ MORE
" I've felt that I've defended President Obama on the issues better than President Obama did last night,"
-- Bill Press, liberal commentator, radio host WWKB 1520 AM
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--Michael Caputo, Republican Strategist
former campaign aide to George HW Bush & Carl Paladino
Under the headline,
Obama Hit With Left Hook On TV, Online,
Politico.com published a sampling of critical comments from usual Obama supporters
" Left-leaning commentators hit President Barack Obama hard on TV and the Internet after the first presidential debate in Denver on Wednesday night, saying GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney handily defeated his more experienced opponent.
“Where was Obama tonight?”
“I don’t think he explained himself very well on the economy. I think he was off his game. I was absolutely stunned tonight,”
The Daily Beast’s Andrew Sullivan called Obama “tired,” “bored” and wrote that he might have even lost the election.
“He choked. He lost. He may even have lost the election tonight,”
Andrew Sullivan, The Daily Beast
Sullivan later added, “Obama looked tired, even bored; he kept looking down; he had no crisp statements of passion or argument; he wasn’t there.
“Obama made a lot of great points tonight. Unfortunately, most of them were for Romney.”
- comedian Bill Maher, went on a Twitter rant.
Read More, from Politico.com
"Watching the debate, the president seemed very beaten. I don't know if he was tired, I'm sure he was very well prepared.. but he avoied all eye contact with Gov. Romney. And his tonality was very poor. I think a great exercise
--Ted Lina, Debate Coach & Instructor, St. Joseph's Collegiate Institute, Kenmore
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Republican Mitt Romney was fiery and having fun. President Barack Obama came off as the professor without much pop. "
- Ben Feller, Associated Press White House Reporter READ MORE
You Write the Debate
Headline This Morning
Romney Routs with Reason not Rhetoric!
"Obama looked and sounded like a Child lying to his Parent"
Much ado over nothing!
.... according to Peoplebrowsr, a web analytics firm.
The group found 47,141 tweets mentioning Romney and "win or winner" compared to just 29,677 mentioning Obama and "win or winner."
In Ohio, a key swing state where polls show Obama has emerged with a lead in recent weeks, the top two debate tweets were "Romney" with 15,115 and "Mitt" with 5,446. "Obama" placed third with 5,328.
From there, the social chatter settled into a few major themes.
Big Bird. Early in the debate, Romney said he would defund public broadcasting to bring down the deficit but added that he liked Big Bird, a popular character on PBS' "Sesame Street." Social networks immediately responded, with participants posting spoof photos of Big Bird and other "Sesame Street" characters on Facebook and setting up parody Big Bird Twitter accounts. During a lull in the debate, an ABC news executive tweeted, "avian life is outstripping human life in this debate."
Jim Lehrer. The veteran PBS newsman was widely panned as the debate moderator on social media, with viewers complaining he asked weak questions and did a poor job of keeping command of the debate's time and tempo. Lehrer's name became a trending topic on Twitter, and his performance drew jeers from countless participants. "Jim Lehrer is like the grandpa at dinner table who falls asleep and wakes up randomly shouting," tweeted a woman with the Twitter handle of Bookgirl96.
Romney's big win. Social media participants marveled at Romney's strong outing and pronounced Obama's debate performance flat, non-energetic and meandering - a dud. While Obama has been leading Romney in battleground state polls in recent days, the consensus on social networks was that Romney's debate performance had breathed new life into his campaign.