All of the pundits and the faithful Obamaites are struggling today trying to understand Obama's truckled attitude towards Mitt Romney in the first presidential debate last night. From my perspective Barack Obama is a very capable extremely intelligent individual that this nation needs desperately. However, our dear President has one very noticeable character trait and that is he is a very sensitive introvert. It has been this trait that has guided his behavior in the political ring, and is often mistakenly described by the news media as "Obama's coolness". Obama introversion has also been detected by the Republicans who have used it to their advantage during the first Obama term. It is also a contributory factor in the many meetings that he has had with the House Republicans during the crisis over the fight over raising the national debt. Those meetings were all behind closed doors. However last night debate revealed it again, and it was watched by some 60 million viewers. More below the orange squiggle.
Many of us regulars here at DKOS have over the past 3+ years have written and commented on Obama's lack of emotion and most of all ability to just get "all riled up" about some outrageous situation. Over the coursee of time we have all been content to accept the idea that it is just because Barack is too cool to get "all riled up", and we found comfort in the idea that a smart Barack would prefer to "get even" rather than "get mad". In the aftermath of last night's debate it is now clear to me that even if Mitt Romney did a Jan Brewer on Barack by wagging a finger in his face while yelling at him, Barack would just simply stand there, grit his teeth and take it. Even without the Romney finger wagging there were many times last night where Barack just grit his teeth and stood silent and took it. Folks get used to it Barack will never be a street fighter. He is a great speaker but never will he be one who argues loudly or otherwise.
This answers the question as to why Barack did not engage an animated Romney who was uttering "take it or leave it"lies as fast as he could get them out. It is hard to grit your teeth with a fixed clamped jaw, while snapping out quick rebuttals to your opponent's lies both at the same time. The most telling thing that Obama did last night was he used his time for closing remarks to self-depreciate his performance as president including making the lame wry joke "that I am sure Govenor Romney agrees with me" at the end of his remarks. It is important for the Obama campaign team to stop trying to explain this Obama character trait away. It is critical for them to find some means of intervention to give Barack the capability to overcome his introversion so that he can feel free to interact with Romney in the next two debates, or else the Obama team will be facing a repeat of last night's debate.