Gibbs: Obama will be more energetic in second debate
October 14th, 2012
10:13 AM ET
2 years ago

Gibbs: Obama will be more energetic in second debate

(CNN) – The unenthusiastic President Barack Obama of the first presidential debate won't be showing up for the second showdown with rival Mitt Romney, one of the president's top advisers promised Sunday.

Robert Gibbs, who said Obama was "disappointed" in his first performance on October 3 in Denver, previewed a more vigorous debater for the upcoming matchup Tuesday night in Hempstead, New York.

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

– Check out the CNN Electoral Map and Calculator and game out your own strategy for November.

"He knew when he walked off that stage, and he also knew as he watched the tape of that debate, that he has to be more energetic," Gibbs said on CNN's "State of the Union." He was speaking with CNN chief political correspondent Candy Crowley, who will moderate Tuesday's debate. "I think you'll see somebody who is very passionate about the choice that our country faces, and putting that choice in front of voters."

Gibbs also shot down reports that Obama ended the first debate believing he had beaten Romney, whom Gibbs ribbed as delivering a "magical and theatrical" performance in Denver.

"For 90 minutes (Romney) walked away from a campaign he had been running for more than six years previous to that," Gibbs claimed, pointing to Romney's remarks on taxes and teachers that struck a more moderate tone than the candidate has expressed on the campaign trail.

Pressed on whether Obama's team should have been expecting that sort of tactic from Romney at the first debate, Gibbs said, "Maybe only Mitt Romney knew that he was going to walk away from his platform."

The upcoming joust on Long Island will feature more robust fact-checking from the president, Gibbs said.

"I think the president will make sure people understand the choice. And certainly if Mitt Romney puts up his hands and says, 'I don't have a $5 trillion tax cut, I don't want to cut taxes on the very wealthy,' absolutely - I think the president will walk through for voters in that room, that are going to be undecided, exactly what the Romney campaign wants to do and why it's bad for this country," the former White House press secretary said.

Romney adviser Ed Gillespie, also speaking on "State of the Union," said a shift in style wouldn't win Obama any points from an electorate looking at the past four years.

"The president can change his style. He can change his tactics. He can't change his record. He can't change his policies. That's what this election is about," Gillespie said.

Also on the CNN Political Ticker

– Rocker to campaign for Obama

– Shot fired at Obama campaign office

– Poll: Romney ahead in key state

– Obama takes supporters out to dinner

– Romney, Ryan buoyed by debates

Watch State of the Union with Candy Crowley Sundays at 9am ET. For the latest from State of the Union click here.

soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Rick McDaniel

    That means he will tell even more, outrageous lies.

    October 14, 2012 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  2. vic , nashville ,tn

    Advice to president after the first debate most foreign media point out Romney’s debate lies with proof, just read those and listen Bill Clinton recent campaign speeches

    October 14, 2012 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  3. don in albuquerque

    Really hope the Prez takes a cue from Biden. Show these people up publically and on live TV for the lying, flip flopping, hypocritical, and downright vulgar people they are. I just loved how Biden took Goober to task on voting against funding for protection of our embassies, and his 20% tax cut, and the bailout which he is against but begged in writing for all he could get. Go get them Mr. President, we have stood by long enough and listened to them shoot off their mouths. Time someone stuffed a sock in them.

    October 14, 2012 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  4. davidfarrar

    In order for Obama to..."walk through for voters in that room, that are going to be undecided, exactly what the Romney campaign wants to do and why it's bad for this country," Obama should have the last ten years of Romney's tax returns, including Romney's FBAR forms*, which provide detailed information to the IRS regarding foreign bank accounts. Without these reports in hand, Obama will simply be blowing smoke...and Romney will know it. In fact, the only people who won't know it will be the public at large.

    ex animo
    davidfarrar

    October 14, 2012 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  5. dmc1261

    As a American I think that the moderate of the vice President debate was not in control and allow the Vice President to be rude and unprofessional ,I am a democrat but this election I am voting off ticket.

    October 14, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  6. Thomas

    @vic , nashville ,tn
    Advice to president after the first debate most foreign media point out Romney’s debate lies with proof, just read those and listen Bill Clinton recent campaign speeches

    ---–

    Your right , from the BBC to the Bangkok Post , the foreign press doesn't speak highly of Romney.
    He will be another GW Bush , when visiting foreign countries , expect riot police for the welcome.

    October 14, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  7. d

    Stop crying. Obama got his ass beat and Biden looked like an ass. You've got nothing more than a miserable, lying, incompetent president and a moron that they've had to hide out for several months because he's so stupid he can't speak without sticking his foot in his mouth and screwing everything up. He's a hack. Step out of your bubble and get some air idiots.

    Have a lovely day.

    October 14, 2012 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  8. Terra Bernie

    I don't think Obama has the mental capacity to hold his own with Romney. It was so obvious in the last debate. I actually started feeling sorry for Obama near the end.

    October 14, 2012 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  9. kahn keller

    Romney adviser Ed Gillespie, also speaking on "State of the Union," said a shift in style wouldn't win Obama any points from an electorate looking at the past four years.... ahha.... gibbs... see... being "more energetic is not the solution to the problem....

    October 14, 2012 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  10. Jack Kessler

    I thought Obama won the first debate and Romney lost it. Takeaways were Obama cool careful commonsense presidential, and Romney phony desperate and betraying his own ideals. When Romney's people wake up, from their kneejerk postop-polls reactions, they'll take those memories to the polls too. Obama needs to remind people that Romney doesn't make sense and is inconsistent, can't be trusted - Republicans like to trust their candidates.

    October 14, 2012 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  11. ST

    @Terra Bernie

    I don't think Obama has the mental capacity to hold his own with Romney. It was so obvious in the last debate. I actually started feeling sorry for Obama near the end.
    ------
    Have you ever heard or read somewhere about "The wounded Buffalo", how it reacts after being hurt? Just wait and witness during the coming debate on Tuesday.

    October 14, 2012 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  12. Anthony

    Being energetic is not enough. Hit back. Most Americans, especially the 47% Romney doesn't care about, need you to go to bat for them. Sure, Romney now says that he is completely wrong about the 47%, but this is Romney we are talking about here. He changes his mind and positions at the drop of a hat. What will stop him from changing his mind on the 47% again, once the election is behind him?

    October 14, 2012 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  13. JerPell

    Sounds to me Gibb's nose is stuck where the sun don't shine!

    October 14, 2012 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  14. Truth be told...

    I wonder which Mitt will show up this time. Either way his last performance had so many proven lies in it that I can't believe anyone has the nerve to say he "won" that. How do you win a debate when you lie 80% of the time? What is even sadder....his numbers went up because his base believes him. Obama should put in place a program to teach people how to use google.

    October 14, 2012 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  15. John

    Romney said in a 1 line statement on Fox news He was wrong about the 47% comment. He never apologized to the American people. This shows what kind of man he is......

    October 14, 2012 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  16. pcalif

    Pres O needs to smile nonstop. He sometimes grimaces, even on the stump. Smile, Smile, Smile.

    October 14, 2012 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  17. Lauri

    Yes, take Romney on like Biden took on Ryan....laugh as their lies are laughable, interrupt as you factcheck, hold their feet to the fire. It might get a bit rough and some might not like it but you just cannot let them go on TV and lie. Americans are though starting to get an idea of their foreign policy...why do you think they want 2 T for defense...more wars. They do not understand diplomacy. GWBush cowboy mentality here we go again. Cut taxes again on the wealthy, hope it trickles down...never has before but let's try it again. Blow up the deficity with this kind of stuff and call the Democrats big spenders...more lies.

    October 14, 2012 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  18. Stephen

    Time for Obama to put an end to the lying and flip-flopping of Romney. Aggressive yet respectful, like Biden, and Obama can put Mitt away.

    October 14, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  19. David Herbek

    The question is does Obama have the nerve to call Mitt Romney a liar to his face, I think not, he likes other people to do his character defamation. Hopefully Mitt Romney challenges him to call him a liar to his face.

    October 14, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  20. Mo

    The President will take Romney the 'flip flop' to school on the debate. Remember there all of voters among the 47%.

    October 14, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  21. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Well Yes,
    As long as no one asks Obama any tough questions. Like, you weren't scared to go on the View, were you? What was that you were saying after the first debate on the Campaign Trail, Who was that at the Debate? It wasn't the Romney I thought I knew. Gee, this is going to be tough. No questions aout the Middle East, please. I missed the Breifing. Out Campaigning, you know.

    October 14, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  22. Hillcrester

    Obama will be re-elected. Everything else is just fodder for the hyper-partisans to throw at each other here.

    October 14, 2012 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  23. Hillcrester

    Dmc1261–You are voting for Romney because the moderator let Biden be rude? Is the rest of your life governed by that kind of capricious thinking?

    October 14, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  24. Willa45

    The Problem for Obama is that he is the incumbent. He has to justify everything he's done, hasn't done and will do. His record already speaks for him and for some people it's not enough. Romney on the other hand is the newcomer with the 'blank slate'....all he needs to do is criticize his opponent, make a lot of promises and talk about "pie in the sky". In the end it boils down to this....Can you trust someone you already know (even if he's not perfect) or someone you just met?

    October 14, 2012 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  25. palma06

    To Thomas:

    Voluntary. This word makes your sentence irrelative to the election.
    Why do his sons have to serve in an all Voluntary military?

    Millions and millions have not served in the military. Why do you have an issue with his five sons not volunteering for service? Would you mention military service if the Obama children were old enough to voulunteer into the military?

    19 granchildren.What is the relationship of having grandchildren and being a candidate for president?

    Just trying to understand your message using the Rothschild family comparasion.

    October 14, 2012 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
1 2