September 30, 2012

Setting the Table for Wednesday: The Romney – Kennedy Debate

Romney Kennedy Debate 1

Romney Kennedy Debate 2

Romney Kennedy Debate 3

Romney Kennedy Debate 4

One of the clever, and biting moves from this year’s DNC involved a specific minute or two out of the video tribute to Teddy Kennedy. With the presidential debates representing the last major campaign hurdle, it wasn’t lost on anyone that the footage of Kennedy out dueling Romney in ’94 was specifically intended to foreshadow the clash taking place this week. What was particularly clever about the edit was the way it operated on two levels. First, it called out Romney for changing his spots on key issues. Second, it showed how Romney can become self-righteous and also get his back up for being called out.

With all the pressure on Romney on Wednesday, I’m interested to see how much he can keep his tone and his mood in check. He wasn’t all that successful doing so in the Republican debates this season as you can see in our “Mitt’s Temperature” post which originally ran last November. I’d be surprised if he gets anywhere near as agitated on Wednesday, but I’d suspect we’ll see something in the range of what we see above.

If you notice in the tape, Kennedy also pays him short shrift as Romney is forced to come over and greet him. I’m also keen to see what happens as Obama and Romney come together, both at the start and the end of the debate on Wednesday, and whether the President will command the stronger presence.

DNC Kennedy Tribute video – Romney portion 1:40 to 3:30. Here also is a more extended (five minute) version of the Kennedy – Romney debate.

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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