Mitt Romney won Wednesday night’s first presidential debate in a blowout performance, according to a new CNN poll
in which two-thirds of people who watched think Romney won the showdown, according to a nationwide poll conducted Wednesday night.
Just one in four thought President Barack Obama was the winner.
It was the best performance of any presidential candidate since 1984.
“Let’s be real,” former Clinton administration adviser James Carville said. “They have run a very good campaign thus far. I don’t think that President Obama did what this campaign wanted him to do. I think he was off his game tonight. But let’s don’t go overboard here. It will be like a big sort of pushback. …
"My point is this — President Obama came in, he wanted to have a conversation. It takes two people to have a conversation. Mitt Romney came in with a chainsaw. He’s trying to talk to a chainsaw.”
According to a CNN/ORC International survey
conducted right after the debate, 67 percent of debate watchers questioned said that the Republican nominee won the faceoff, with one in four saying that President Obama was victorious.
"No presidential candidate has topped 60 percent in that question since it was first asked in 1984," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
But nearly half of debate watchers said the showdown didn't make them more likely to vote for either candidate. Thirty-five percent said the debate made them more likely to vote for Romney while only 18 percent said the faceoff made them more likely to vote to re-elect the president.
More than six in ten said that president did worse than expected. That was compared to the 82 percent who said that Romney performed better than expected. Only one in ten felt that the former Massachusetts governor performed worse than expected.
"This poll does not and cannot reflect the views of all Americans. It only represents the views of people who watched the debate and by definition cannot be an indication of how the entire American public will react to Wednesday's debate in the coming days," Holland told CNN.
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