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Yesterday, I wrote a diary explaining my fear that Obama had really screwed up the election by blowing the debate, allowing polls to creep up for Romney, and headlines to proclaim a Romney comeback, and possibly (if not stopped by better performances or something positive for Obama) an avalanche that undercuts the entire campaign.

Having re-read what I wrote, and after spending a long night reading the thoughts of people I greatly respect (here and elsewhere, right, left and center), I have come to two conclusions.

1. I wasn't wrong that it COULD happen.
2. I was very, very wrong about the CHANCE that it could happen.

One of the main criticisms of what I wrote is that I needlessly jumped to conclusions based on a small sample of polls -- polls that were either skewed toward Romney (bad party ID breakdowns, or lots of old, white southern men, for example) or polls that reflected the Thursday/Friday panic (our side) and jubilation (their side).

I dismissed these concerns as wishful thinking. After all, we see the GOP people do this all the time. They see a poll they don't like and they just toss it aside as if it never happened. I didn't want to go down that road.

But then, more data started coming out, specifically from DK itself. We learned that, for all intents and purposes, Romney got a small, unsustained bounce from the debate. We learned that those couple of days were, so far, the high mark for Romney. And we learned that even then, with everything aligning for Romney, he still couldn't break 50% and he still couldn't win the election.

For my theory's fears to come true, Romney would have had to take the advantage and then create a new floor of support, and then build on that. He did not do that, and the data that has been cited on this site bears that out. The bounce is already receding; the president had a good weekend, and the data will show that very soon.

Ironically, this may be a blessing in disguise. Headline trumpeting Romney will soon reverse, with Obama gaining momentum as the bounce fades further. These headlines will mix with Biden wiping the floor with Ryan (Biden can get feisty and go on the attack in a way Obama can not, both as a personality trait and as the President) to reinforce the pro-Obama narrative as opposed to the current, but fleeting, pro-Romney narrative.

In other words, I was right about the possibilities...I was just wrong about whether or not they'd happen. In light of the data and analysis, it does not appear my worry was warranted. Considering the stakes, I am very, very pleased to have been wrong yesterday.

Now if you'll excuse me, once I remove my foot from my mouth, I have a wonderful serving of crow to eat. Thanks again for a great community that (mostly -- a few people were kind of dicks about it, which is fine) pushes back against excessive worry and reminds all of us -- myself included -- that we're right, we're winning, and we will win.


Which of these happened?

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1%2 votes

| 163 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •   I hope we see more of these Diaries (7+ / 0-)

    With the idea that perhaps President Obama has this thing?

    No reason to feel badly. We were ALL feeling badly this past weekend. But we're in this together, through good times and bad.

    After all, we're all wanting something very very special - a second term for our president.

  •  Glad you saw the light! (7+ / 0-)

    It takes a lot of character to admit to a mistake, especially in a public venue like this - so, * kudos * props * and * huzzahs *

    Now, let's get to work  and GOTV!

    (Don't) Steal My Stickers bumpersticker 4 Blues in a Red zone

    by jan4insight on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 01:25:24 PM PDT

  •  I think the thing most in need of being (3+ / 0-)

    walked back is your assertion that Obama was "lazy and arrogant."  That probably did more to anger people than anything else.

  •  I too (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tonedevil, blueyedace2

    went through the same trials and tribulations after the debate.  Here's my take.  Obama gave Romney a whole shitload of rope for which to hang himself, and will start pulling on that rope in the next debate.  It's my hope that Obama will discount all of Romney's lies, with factual proof of such in each and every response he has.

  •  I have no problem with your worry (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Minnesota Deb, Tonedevil

    The campaign has been going strong for the last 9 months if not longer and I can see how there will be moments of discouragement  and worry - afterall we are human. You had the courage to post your concerns while most of us did not.   Do not eat too much crow as I think you are to be admired for admitting a mistake.

  •  Yeah, you really did a lay a turd yesterday. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Calling people "cheerleaders" for trying to talk some sense over the maelstrom of falling-sky doomsaying.

    Remember this for next time we have an election, please.

  •  This should be a cautionary tale (3+ / 0-)

    regarding constant poll watching.  Let the campaigns do that.

    "No, I'm being judged against the ideal. Joe Biden has a saying: 'Don't judge me against the Almighty, judge me against the alternative." --President Barack Obama, 12/11/11

    by smoothnmellow on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 01:35:12 PM PDT

  •  Oh more like (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I don't want to be outted as a sock puppet, perhaps?

    "No, I'm being judged against the ideal. Joe Biden has a saying: 'Don't judge me against the Almighty, judge me against the alternative." --President Barack Obama, 12/11/11

    by smoothnmellow on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 01:38:50 PM PDT

    •  Hmm (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KateCrashes, DuzT, rubyr

      I'm not sure how to rebut that. It's sort of like being called a racist or called a witch, back in the day. Just about any response I could have could be read to support your argument.

      Is there something I could provide you that would show I am sincere and not, as you say, a sock-puppet or a right-wing plant?

      As I said before, I was a Republican through the 2008 elections, and a little beyond that, so I suppose anything I published then wouldn't be helpful.

      Since then, I did spend a year or so writing for a financial media site called Benzinga. If you've heard of them, I'd be shocked. They were a start-up my friend created, and mostly cater to stock traders and stock analysts. I joined on account of my knowledge of the markets, world economics, and politics.

      I mostly had to cover market companies and push some Ron Paul stories (a lot of traders like Ron Paul, and as a start-up, pageviews are crucial), but whenever I could flip a story into a political one, I did so. I left there around last Christmas, as the hours required of me became incompatible with my illness, and there is little payroll wiggle room at a start-up for someone who can only give 50%.

      If you're interested in sifting through 10 or 20 stock stories to find 1 political one, you'll find they're almost all either covering Ron Paul's campaign or smacking Republicans around. (And really, Ron Paul would have been the gift that kept on giving, had he won the nomination or even caused a ruckus at the convention.)

      My author page is below. I don't think it even goes back too far -- as I said, it was a friend's start-up that I joined at the beginning. Try not to judge me on the style: it's not the best format for what I wanted to do, but it wasn't my call.

      Other than that, all I have are future endeavors when I get healthy again (which I will likely include in my diary), and my word as a human being.

      If there is anything else I can do to change your mind, please let me know, here or as a PM.

      •  Well the Salem analogy is a good one b/c (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Catte Nappe

        if this were a real village there would be some people floating in a pool right about now because they didn't drink the hysterical kool-aid and your diary would be the equivalent of 'oops, my bad, I guess they DID have a point'. So it kind of goes both ways.

        That said, it's brave of you to own up.

        If I knew it was going to be that kind of party, I'd have stuck my ---- in the mashed potatoes! - Paul's Boutique

        by DoctorWho on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 02:10:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Oooh? (0+ / 0-)

      That's the kind of accusation that really needs some solid evidence to go with it. Absent solid evidence it's the kind of accusation that earns HRs.

      " can’t find any oxygen from outside the aircraft to get in the aircraft, because the windows don’t open. I don’t know why they don’t do that. It’s a real problem." Mitt Romney

      by Catte Nappe on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 02:43:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  this is all I have to say about it..... (7+ / 0-)


    "It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment." *Ansel Adams* ."Even if you are on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there."*Will Rogers*

    by Statusquomustgo on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 01:40:52 PM PDT

  •  Maybe folks just shouldn't write diaries based (6+ / 0-)

    on their moment-to-moment emotions?

    You can call it "class warfare" -- we call it "common sense"

    by kenlac on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 01:46:25 PM PDT

  •  Obama could take a stand and just simply frame (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the election about the facts, about the economy, the deficit, and the choice of path... and DAMN the debating style.

    He could just ask the voters to choose.  In his own direct  words, just take a risk and lay it out flat: "Here's the choice, here are the facts. Please choose responsibly." Kind of like the 2008 'race speech' but in an economic context.  He's usually done well when being personal, honest, and adult. Grant to voters that Romney has some style and salesmanship appeal but STATE DIRECTLY that he's a flim-flam artist selling ocean-front property in Ohio.  Ask voters to vote truth, for the next generation.

    If people need the 'personal style' and choose that over substance, then any gains from an election win are less enduring anyway; they won't really understand the path they've chosen. If all they want is a figurehead leader then go ahead and choose the most appealing smooth talker. If the future of health care or the economy truly rests precariously on that premise,  highlight that precarious nature itself. The electorate would be presented with a change to evolve or to repeat past mistakes. Either way, that ultimately represents progress.

  •  Can we please have realistic expectations re VP (8+ / 0-)

    I'm seeing many comments on how Joe Biden will mop the floor with Ryan. Ryan is as slick a liar as Romney is. Morover,  Ryan is playing the serious wonky guy pretty well.

    I have every confidence in Joe but if both vp candidates perform well, we'll have a draw.

    Saying Joe will cream Ryan is making the same error of unrealistic expectations all over again. And it sets up the stage for another round of liberals freaking out and AMPLIFYING problems.

    If the debate is declared a draw, it will NOT mean that the election is lost.

    This election is close. Simple as that. This was always supposed to be close. A black man trying to win reelection in a difficult economy, with NUMEROUS powerful lobbies allied against him. Come on people.  

    yes President Obama's debate loss on "style" was bad and has done some damage. But thinking that even with a good performance, President Obama would have put the election in the bag was probably unrealistic. We assumed Romney would be as weak in the debate as he had been on the campaign trail. That turned out not to be true. Looking at Romney's career, persuasion and manipulation has been his speciality, hasn't it ?
    President Obama's forte is organizing, managing, governing, while he struggles with the theatrics of modern american politics.

    •  I just don't see Ryan as ready for (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      prime time when it comes to national politics -- he's been in the House for 13 years (assumed office Jan 1999), and there's a difference between running on a national stage and running in a friendly district. (Still hoping it'll be far less friendly this time around and he'll get bounced from his House seat.) Biden's an old pro at this...and this time he doesn't have to worry about being accused of "beating up" on poor, defenseless Sarah Palin.

      "If we ever needed to vote we sure do need to vote now" -- Rev. William Barber, NAACP

      by Cali Scribe on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 02:26:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I agree. VP Biden is an excellent feisty debater (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueyedace2, jan4insight

      but he, too, is decent, won't lie and won't be rude like Romney was. If people are looking for a pit bull, they might get it and they might not.

      The President and the Vice President are human beings, we have to remember that.

      Also, Paul Ryan is slick as owl s**t. I imagine he will lie and talk over the moderator and be rude just as Romney was.

      "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

      by rubyr on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 03:52:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  i don't know if i'm one of the ones you (0+ / 0-)

    consider a "dick" in your diary yesterday, but i stand by my comment & applaud you for admitting your error.

    nobody's perfect & it's a sign of character to admit when you're wrong.

    rec'd ya today  :)

  •  Hooray for you!!! This diary took courage. (3+ / 0-)

    and strength. Thank you for this diary.

    "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

    by rubyr on Tue Oct 09, 2012 at 03:54:44 PM PDT

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