Romney and Obama differ over economy at DU

Well, the first presidential debate has now come and gone, and it was definitely an interesting one, even if it seemed like the only topic that got covered appropriately was the economy.

Now, everyone is going to have a different opinion on who won or who lost, but it seems like the debate was actually a very well-rounded event; it does not seem like one man totally undressed the other.


Personally, I was surprised that the debate was not a bit nastier. Both candidates seemed to respect each other as people, and focused on policy rebuttal rather than personal attacks, which is definitely a good thing.

I think Romney overall gained a bit of ground from this debate. He seemed prepared to talk about the economy and did a great job of relating everything back to that topic.

Perhaps he gained ground, though, because of how much was available for him to gain. Like how it’s easier to spend more money when you have plenty of it — something he’d know quite a lot about.

I have no doubt that Romney is confident in his view of what an economic recovery would be comprised of — he spoke with the conviction of a man that really does believe the message he preaches.

However, it did appear that Romney is a bit of a pompous, restless presidential hopeful. I hope someone can count the times he interrupted the moderator to reiterate his talking points again and again. I stopped counting when I ran out of fingers.

President Obama, on the other hand, seemed to genuinely be a kind and caring person, taking the time out of his allotted rebuttal to personally thank DU and the moderator and to wish his wife a happy anniversary. Basically, the president did a great job appearing more human than his challenger.

The debate focused on taxes for a decent length of time, and the president was a bit taken aback by Mitt Romney’s aboutface concerning taxes — saying he is not advocating for a tax cut for the rich, which he had been pushing for up until the debate.

The president seemed to do a better job at addressing taxes — at least as far as middle class Americans are concerned. He stated how we need “a fair and balanced tax code.” It’s well known that President Obama advocates that the wealthy pay “their fair share” in taxes.

It was here that we got to see the differences between these two candidates, as Romney stated in clear English that he was opposed to taking in new revenue through new taxes, stating instead that he wants to reduce the deficit through new workers paying taxes, rather than increasing them on the wealthiest Americans.

It was interesting how many times throughout the night that the two agreed that their plans were similar or they had similar beliefs, seemingly trying to each appear moderate rather than the extremists they’re generally portrayed to be in the media.


Romney tried to appeal to the middle class somewhat during the debate and described them as being crushed by Obama’s policies during the past four years — which I thought was interesting. I have not heard many arguments that state Obama is hurting the less fortunate, and I am not really convinced that argument is true.

Obama truly does care about the middle class and does everything he can to make sure they succeed. I think his ideas and policies are more in tune with the average person in the real world. He comes out of this debate looking just as strong as when he went in.

Res Stecker is a junior international studies major. His columns appear Thursdays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to