President Obama‘s first real chance to settle the score with Mitt Romney comes next Tuesday. That’s when the two candidates debate again, following Obama’s decidedly poor showing in the first debate.
In the Wall Street Journal, Karl Rove has some advice for Obama:
It’s unlikely that Mr. Obama will do as poorly next Tuesday at Hofstra University in New York. His supporters are demanding that he be more aggressive. He will be, telling AM radio’s Tom Joyner on Wednesday that he’d been “too polite” in the first debate.
But if the president is as angry and negative in the Oct. 16 debate as he has been on the campaign trail the past week, he will damage himself again. It’s hard in a town-hall format like next week’s to attack, and too easy to come across as mean and nasty. Also, alleging that Mr. Romney is a serial deceiver—as the president and top advisers are doing—is a hard sell. Mr. Romney came across last week as practical and thoughtful, authentic and a straight shooter.
It’s worth noting that MSNBC contributor Michael Eric Dyson has said Obama’s shoddy debate performance was the result of not wanting to come off as an “angry black man.”