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Posted by on Oct 19, 2011 in Politics | 30 comments

Winner of Vegas GOP Debate is Pres. Obama

WASHINGTON – Ann Romney had one word to describe what went down between Rick Perry and her husband Mitt Romney last night. According to CNN’s John King, it was “animosity.”

Politico today:

While he wasn’t the only one of the six candidates on stage to take aim at Romney, it was the Texas governor who personalized the fight. The intensely competitive Perry, frustrated with his decline in the polls, sought to mount a comeback the only way he knows: by punching harder. He was jarringly more alive than in his recent debate performances, and his criticism of Romney’s record became an attack on his rival’s character. With a point-blank attack on Romney’s “hypocrisy” for hiring illegal immigrants, the Texan sent an unmistakable message that he won’t go away with a whimper.

The usually polished and suave Romney, confronted in the most direct manner to date, was red-faced and animated, so flustered and angered by the attack that he fired back with a taunt: Perry, jabbed Romney, has had a “tough couple of debates.”

Joe’s excellent liveblogging from last night gives you the play-by-play.

The biggest loser was Herman 9-9-9 Cain. After the beginning onslaught, Mr. Cain seemed to wither like a helium balloon popped by a pin. Newt Gingrich got off the best retort on 9-9-9. Asked how it was going to go trying to sell the American people on the plan, paraphrasing the question, Newt simply said, you just saw it. He was referring to Romney’s evisceration of Cain’s apples and oranges rambling, which reminded everyone just how inept the Republican Party is right now on making any sense at all on the economy.

As weak as Pres. Obama is today, with large majorities believing he doesn’t know what he’s doing on the economy. The Republicans are absolutely inept at making any economic case at this point, with Herman Cain the biggest obstacle to fiscal sanity I’ve ever seen coming from the right. Mr. Cain’s 9-9-9 is positively incomprehensible, especially if you’re a small government conservative.

Joe Scarborough said it best yesterday:

“… This is exhibit 800 over the past year why my Republican Party has lost their way in such a serious, serious way. We laugh about it, but it is… it is actually tragic.”

It’s a long way to November 2012, but right now team Obama has to be giddy. They’ve even got a priceless Mitt Romney clip on “illegal immigration” to resurrect.

The “animosity” between Perry and Romney doesn’t look like it’s going away any time soon. Perry’s going to bear down for a final push. He’s got the money to do a blizzard of negative advertising, hitting Romney where it hurts.

One other thing that was very good news for the Democrats last night. Mitt Romney revealed his thin skin. It was only a peek. However, when you’re dealing with the likes of David Axelrod & company, some of the dirtiest political players around, that’s all they need. Just one look at a candidate’s weak spot and they’re ready to rock.

Taylor Marsh’s new e-book, The Hillary Effect – Politics, Sexism and the Destiny of Loss will be published in November by Premier Digital Publishing. Marsh is an author, Washington based political analyst, veteran national politics writer and commentator on national politics, foreign policy, and women in power. She has reported from the White House, been profiled in the Washington Post, The New Republic, and has been seen on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, CNN, MSNBC, Al Jazeera English and Al Jazeera Arabic, as well as on radio across the dial and on satellite, including the BBC. Marsh lives in the Washington, D.C. area. This column is cross posted from new media her blog.