October 4th, 2012
01:09 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama: 'Real' Mitt Romney was missing from debate

Denver (CNN) – President Barack Obama fired back at Mitt Romney in his first post-debate stop in Denver Thursday, contrasting the Romney he saw at the debate with the Romney seen on the campaign trail over the last year.

"We had our first debate last night, and when I got onto the stage I met this very spirited fellow who claimed to be Mitt Romney," Obama told the crowd of roughly 12,300. "But it couldn't have been the real Mitt Romney."

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The "real" Romney, he said, has traveled the country promoting tax cuts for the wealthy, education plans that would hurt teachers and was a pioneer of outsourcing jobs overseas.

However, Wednesday night, Obama said Romney reversed those views because he "doesn't want to be held accountable for the real Mitt Romney" and "what he's been saying for the last year."

The president's comments echoed much of what his campaign has been peddling since the showdown, largely in response to criticism Obama did not bring his A-game to the first debate.

But at the campaign event, Obama said he spent the 90 minute event "trying to hit him down."

He also took on a much talked about moment, when Romney said eliminating funding for PBS, among other programs, would help drive down the debt.

"Thank goodness somebody is finally getting tough on Big Bird. It's about time," Obama said. "We didn't know that Big Bird was driving the federal deficit, but that's what we heard last night. How about that?"

Responding to the crowd, Obama said "Elmo too?"

Ryan Williams, a spokesman for Mitt Romney, defended the candidate's performance, writing in a statement, "Last night, Mitt Romney demonstrated why he should be President, laying out the clear choice in this election."

The Obama event attendees were on the receiving end of a will.i.am DJ fest before hearing from former Transportation Secretary Frederico Pena, Colorado Sen. Mark Udall and then the president.

will.i.am., of Black Eyed Peas fame, is an ardent supporter of the president and attended the debate Wednesday night. An aide to the musician said he plans to help the president's re-election effort "as much as we possibly can," adding that he will join the president next in Ohio next week.

Filed under: 2012 • Colorado • President Obama • Presidential Debates
soundoff (125 Responses)
  1. Critical Thinking

    President Obama, you might want to start packing and looking at new schools for your kids.

    October 4, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  2. kgarner

    Just in case you won't post my first comment. So was that the 'Real' Obama cuz he sucked!!

    October 4, 2012 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  3. sung

    I'm a woman and I already know you are nice. But you said you are going to fight for us if re-elected for a 2nd term. I'd like to see that spirit now with the debates that you and VP will be having.

    October 4, 2012 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  4. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Begging your pardon Mr. President, but THAT was the real Mitt Romney last night able to morph into whatever he needs to morph and say in order to get two more votes.
    You better get wise to that...if you aren't already.
    Obama 2012

    October 4, 2012 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  5. Ready

    Ha, I think it's Obama who didn't show up to the debate. Wow, what a train wreck...

    October 4, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  6. truth hurts

    No Obama, the person that gave you a supreme smackdown was the real Mitt Romney, not the mythical made up you you have created in your deceitful ads. It appears Obama is believing his own marketing attack BS ads. Not surprising I guess as this is what libtards do, create an alternate universe because they do know how to survive in the real one.

    But the REAL Obama did show up! The clueless empty suit that can't put two words together without a prepared script and a teleprompter. The American people are seeing just how badly they were snookered by you an dthe LSM in 2008.

    Maybe you should consider wearly a helmet for the next debate? The beating is going to continue.

    October 4, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  7. tykl

    Was the real Obama on the stage? Yes. An ill-tempered, ill-prepared, incompetent, snarky, un-knowledgeable egomaniac. THIS is the guy who deals with Congress. Any wonder nothing gets done? Also, Obama did't recognize Romney because Romney is not the myth that Axelrod and O have created in the media with 100's of millions of dollars. Like O said, if you don't have a record, you demonize your opponent. 100's of millions of dollars later, O believes his own smoke screen. O, meet reality.

    October 4, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  8. Chumlee

    Do not be fooled voters. Romney, as is normal for this hack, lied throughout the debate. LIED. You want a liar who will not provide his tax returns to the American public, who puts his money in offshore accounts

    October 4, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  9. Time for Real Change!

    I was wondering how Obama was going to spin his poor performance. Simply put, his performance is representative of his performance over his term as President. Romney was sharp and engaged and confident. Obama displayed how weak he was. Unable to defend his poor record, he had little in the way of ammo to fire away with.

    October 4, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  10. CryBabies

    Childish and desperate comebacks Mr.. President . Joking about Big Bird and Elmo?!/!. How about getting serious which means also getting REAL? This is sad on the part of our President.

    October 4, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  11. ted

    Obama may not have been on his A+ game last night, but I feel he did a great job. Romney though stood up there and lied his butt off about everything. Talk it cheap and Romney basically said what he said to get votes and the ignorant among us may change their votes. Romney said he would dump Obamacare and Dodd-Frank, but when asked specifics as to what he would replace them with, he had no plan at all. All I can say is that Obama has to win in November or the middle class will get the screwing of its life because of Romney/Ryan's wrongheaded and destructive budget plans and policies.

    October 4, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  12. Chumlee

    Romney puts his money in offshore accounts to avoid paying US taxes. HE IS A TAX CHEAT. HE DOES NOT CARE ABOUT AMERICA, because if he did, he would have his money in America, working for America.

    Romney is an appalling liar

    October 4, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  13. Thomas

    How do you prepare and debate a person who can change his positions on the fly? The continuous coverage of medical benefits for a period of time was quickly taken back by his campaign literally right after the debate.

    How can people actually say OOOO BOY HE GOT HIM GOOD when he's literally making things up?

    October 4, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  14. Borderless

    So after the fight, Obama picked himself up, bloodied and bruised, waited for the bully to get far enough away and shouted "Jerk!"? Seriously? People want this guy to lead our nation? Get a spine, Obama!

    October 4, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |

    I'm convinced! Willard Milton Romney is a shapeshifter or a chameleon. Who has more positions than this guy?

    October 4, 2012 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  16. amf140

    The POTUS is grasping at anything – hoping it will stick. Very hard to watch his demise but it has been by his own doing.

    October 4, 2012 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  17. Dana

    It doesn't matter whether Romney was himself or not. YOU disappointed me by not attacking him like you should. Not calling him out on so many lies. What was wrong with you!

    October 4, 2012 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  18. teleprompter

    Obama claims

    “Right now, companies get tax breaks for moving jobs and profits overseas.”

    National Taxpayers Union Jan 2012

    Unfortunately for Obama saying something a bunch of times
    doesn’t make it true. The fact is, no such tax break exists.

    October 4, 2012 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  19. Chat Pata

    The question is, where was the real Obama? He looked like Kerry-2004 instead of Obama-2008. Kerry-2004 flip flopped on Iraq war, Obama-2004 was clearly against it. Kerry-2004 could not defend himself against Swiftboaters, Obama defended against Birthers, Undergrounders etc etc. Sparring with Kerry screwed Obama.

    October 4, 2012 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  20. Rick

    So Mittens has "ONE" stellar moment, he is the new president...........I don't think so.

    October 4, 2012 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  21. roadkilled

    I'm surprised that Obama was surprised about Flip Romney! He should know better!

    October 4, 2012 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  22. luvbach1

    Screwed! Ted, and what has the middle class and the whole country been getting the last 3.9 years? Your dunce Obama tried to act like he hasn't been in office. That only worked the first time.

    October 4, 2012 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  23. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    I'll give "the Romney" credit where credit is due, he won the debate but he will not and cannot win the Presidency, the math isn't there just like the math isn't there when he cannot and does not explain his policies.

    October 4, 2012 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  24. Latino

    We saw the real Obama too. Did't we ? He was horrible, and a liar.

    October 4, 2012 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  25. Four and The Door

    Another interesting excuse from Obama. he's the master.

    October 4, 2012 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
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