Skubick: The reasons behind a White House victory - FOX 32 News Chicago

Skubick: The reasons behind a White House victory

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Critics agree that Mitt Romney clearly won the first presidential debate, which could lead to his ultimate victory. Critics agree that Mitt Romney clearly won the first presidential debate, which could lead to his ultimate victory.

By Tim Skubick
FOX 2 Political Analyst

LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) - It's dangerous to write history before it unfolds, but there is enough evidence to allow one to wade into the murky waters of why Barack Obama or Mitt Romney won the presidency.  

If there is a Romney win, trace it back to the first debate. History may show that was "the" October surprise.

As President Barack Obama dozed, Mitt Romney rose. A more passionate and articulate Romeny showed up giving viewers a more positive glimpse of a guy the Democrats had all but written off for being dispassionate, too rich, unconnected to the electorate and simply "not one of us."

Before the debate that description of the former Massachusetts governor was sticking like glue. He was stiff Al Gore without the sweater as he bumbled along on the campaign trail making one gaff after another and changing his wardrobe daily in a desperate attempt to be just like us.

Problem was, most common folks don't wear starched and pressed blue jeans.

But in the debate Romney was on his game, and while he never said he felt your pain, you came away thinking this guy was not the in-human dud you thought he was.  

Even though the president recovered nicely in debates two and three, the damage was done. Mr. Obama had unintentionally allowed his opponent to get up off the mat. It was game on and potentially game over.

On the President Obama side of the equation his biggest challenge was not of his own doing but it contributed to a Romney win nonetheless.

When he ran the first time, the overly passionate Obama-backers, felt they were part of a movement that was reconstructing American history. Once and for all, those citizens were closing the door on the "race" chapter.

Electing the first African-American president brought joy and tears to hearts and eyes of those who celebrated the victory in that Chicago park that November night when the nation had spoken. But now that motivation is gone.

Barack Obama's pledge of "We can" turned into the hopeful notion of "Now we will."  The Obama nation was on a high.

But how'd that turn out?

Many of the cult-like Obama voters watched the next four years unfold, and with each year, the passion waned. To be sure the Republicans did a masterful job of obstructing whenever they could to make sure the president did not get many victories. But citizens who do not watch the day-to-day back and forth in Washington, didn't much notice that critical point. They just knew their guy did not deliver on the high hopes they had and the Romney camp exploited that theme.

So if the president overcomes that, how did he win?

Women. Republicans, so driven by their social agenda, drove women back into the Obama camp with all their chatter about rape, and God, and men telling women what to do with their bodies.

Kids. Candidate Obama first time out won the college kids. However many of them were a tough sell the second time around, and if the president wins, he got them back in the game.

Economy. When Mr. Romney asked, "Are you better off than you were four years ago?"  Much to his chagrin more persons than he expected said yes. True, 'Happy Days' are not here again, but the president laid claim to the notion that the recovery was moving in the right direction.

Class card. Rich vs. poor. The Obama folks painted the challenger as more interested in taking care of his rich buddies than you. End of story.

Likeabllity. At the end of the day voters don't focus on the issues but their guts and not their brains. Mr. Obama has led there and despite Mr. Romney's in-roads on this front, at the end of the day you still can't have a beer with him because he doesn't drink which clearly means, in many person's mind, he really isn't one of us.

So there you have the reasons why one of these guys won.

Now the only question is, which one is it?

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