Rove: Romney's Debate Win May Have Sealed Election

Thursday, 11 Oct 2012 10:41 AM

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Ace Republican strategist Karl Rove says Mitt Romney’s overwhelming victory in last Wednesday’s debate may sew up the election for him.

“How big an impact did Mitt Romney's performance in last week's debate have?” Rove asks rhetorically in The Wall Street Journal. “Huge. Mr. Romney not only won the night, he changed the arc of the election — and perhaps its outcome.”

The RealClearPolitics average of the latest seven polls shows Romney ahead (by 1.1 percentage points) for the first time since clinching the nomination in mid-April. Prior to the debate Romney trailed by an average of 3.1 points, Rove says.

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“The bounce is likely to grow. . . . The first debate generally frames the series and establishes whether the bounce will be large or modest. Mr. Romney's bounce is significant.”

Obama will likely improve his performance in next Tuesday’s debate and adopt a more aggressive tone, Rove says. “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,” the former aide to George W. Bush writes.

“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.”

Urgent Poll: Romney Vs. Obama – VOTE NOW!

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