Most political pundits know that presidential debates, particularly these absurd "town hall" debacles, are more about who makes a gaffe or has an "oops moment" than about who brings the better policy to the table.
Wednesday night's presidential debate in which Mitt Romney shellacked Barack Obama attracted the biggest audience since the debate between Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan seven days before the 1980 election.
Mitt Romney, as was clear to all who watched the first presidential debate, channeled Ronald Reagan right down to the glistening hair and respectful smiling face that listened as his opponent tap-danced and stutter-stepped his way to a resounding thumping in the contest.
Mitt Romney was 13 years old and Barack Obama had not been born when an energetic-looking John Kennedy, 43, and a tired-looking Richard Nixon, 47, walked into the WBBM-TV studio in Chicago for the first general election debate between presidential candidates.
Mitt Romney has conceded that his thoughts, expressed at that Boca Raton, Fla., fundraiser, were "not elegantly" stated. Those mocking him might concede he has tabled one of the mega-issues of our time.
Perhaps the most significant and disappointing theme that has run through not only my decades in politics, but my years afterward as a pollster and analyst, has been the GOP's increasing tendency to shy away from anyone or anything that is bold or unique.