Liberal Media Calls It for Romney

Ben Smith calls it first at 9:42, then the pile on begins


BuzzFeed called it early and the liberal media piled on: Mitt Romney won the first presidential debate in Denver. A number of liberals admitted to Obama’s defeat, calling Romney’s performance more aggressive, energetic, and confident.

Editor-in-chief Ben Smith called it at 9:42 p.m.:

Mitt Romney, trailing in the polls, needed to prove tonight that he could stand on stage with President Barack Obama as an equal and a plausible president of the United States.

He did that in the crucial first 40 minutes of Wednesday night’s debate, addressing Obama respectfully, even warmly — but then tangling with a sometimes hazy and professorial Obama on taxes and deficits.

“You don’t just pick the winners and losers — you pick the losers,” he told Obama of his energy investments, sliding time and time again into a second person singular address calculated to level the rhetorical playing field.

Andrew Sullivan chimed in minutes later, blasting Obama’s performance, calling it “exhausted, over-briefed… or just flailing”:

And from there, plenty more:

David Gregory:

Bill Maher:

David Corn:

The New York Times’ Steven Greenhouse:

Chris Cillizza:


Ezra Klein:

BuzzFeed’s Ben Smith:

Howard Fineman:

Jeffrey Goldberg:

Marc Tracy:

Conor Friedersdorf:

Andrew Sullivan:

“10.29 pm. How is Obama’s closing statement so fucking sad, confused and lame? He choked. He lost. He may even have lost the election tonight.”

Jeffrey Goldberg, again:

John Harwood:

Joy Behar:

Bill Maher, again:

Glenn Greenwald:

GQ Politics:

John Stanton:

Ari Melber:

Nicholas Kristof:

Peter Beinart:

Matt Yglesias:

Alec MacGillis:

Michael Moore:

Piers Morgan:

Robert Draper:

Chris Cillizza, again:

Roland Martin:

Jon Ralston:

Steve Kornacki:

Vanity Fair:

Sam Stein:

Adam Nagourney:

Alex Pareene:

Andrew Sullivan, again:

Steven Greenhouse, again:

Mark Halperin:

Noah Scheiber:

Andrew Sullivan, again:

Marc Ambinder:

Will McAvoy:

And if this doesn’t convince you Romney won, then maybe this Bette Midler tweet should give you solace: