Sen. John McCain says Barack Obama's debate performance this week proves that he has spent the last four years "in a bubble," but he warned the president would be better prepared for his next meeting with Mitt Romney.
"I think it obviously was a very big win for Mitt," the Arizona Republican told Fox News' Greta Van Susteren Thursday night in reference to the first debate between Obama and the Republican presidential nominee. "I think it's pretty obvious that . . . President Obama has spent the last four years in a bubble with an adoring media.
"But I also know that Barack Obama is a very excellent debater," he continued. "He . . . will be going over the mistakes that he made and I think that he is going to be much better, and much better prepared in the next debate."
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McCain added that Obama came off to him as "a little too sure of himself and probably may not have taken Mitt seriously enough."
"I guarantee you, the next time around, he will be taking him seriously."
But McCain, who faced off against Obama as the GOP nominee in the 2008 presidential election, said Romney was able to accomplish something very important in the first debate that would help sustain him through his next two face-to-face encounters with the president on Oct. 16 and Oct. 22.
"Mitt Romney, last night, came across as a person of capability, of vision, and who knows what is best for America," McCain said. "I think that was really the most important part of that whole debate."
The senator said the difference in his debates with the president and Romney's is that "in 2008 [Obama] had no record."
"It was all about hope and change," the senator said. "Now he has a record that is very difficult, if not impossible to defend. That's why Mitt kept him on the defensive all the time."
McCain also told Van Susteren he expects Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan to do well against Vice President Joe Biden because he knows the issues "backwards and forwards."
The senator described Biden as "the gift that keeps on giving" because of his off-the-cuff remarks that sometimes cause problems for the Obama campaign. He said, for example, that Ryan should go after Biden for his latest "gaffe" about the middle class being "buried" for the last four years.
"That's where we could start," he said, adding that while Ryan "may not be the most colorful individual," he'll do well against Biden on "knowledge alone and presentation" of issues.
Besides, McCain said, the vice president might even help Ryan out by saying "something that doesn't make much sense — because he almost always does."
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