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It is the Altitude, Stupid

Al Gore said the altitude explained the lackluster performance by President Obama in the debate in Denver, winning the prize for the most outlandish excuse.

Peggy Noonan, columnist for the Wall Street Journal has had much advice for Mitt Romney up to this point in the presidential campaign. Her tone changed, however, following the debate last week.

Noonan declared Romney the winner, and further explained that the winner had taken all the air out of President Obama in the debate. A line of media experts waited with glee for the first debate, leaving that night trying to find common ground on which they could stand to explain why their chosen champion had lost.

Of all the sound bites and video clips previewed from the response of the media in reference to what they believed happened to President Obama and his failed performance, by far, the one that was staked out in a far away place would be from a former vice president. Al Gore, explaining to listeners near him, said the altitude in Denver could serve as the only answer to why President Obama had been unable to respond with passion to the questions from the moderator or rebut the responses from Mitt Romney. Gore used the fact that since the location of the debate was in Denver, Colo., it was so far above sea level, it somehow caused a slowdown in the way oxygen was carried through the body and thus explains what happened to President Obama.

Large vats of ink and much room has been given by the media seeking an explanation as to what happened in what was to have been a shining moment of victory from the president, and yet, turned into a pitiful performance from him, but the Gore excuse wins the prize for the most outlandish.

Many of us have continued to insist that at the end of the day, ideas win out in a debate. It is not room temperature, altitude and hot lights that add up to make a reason someone did not communicate their message. The truth is known the message that was delivered by President Obama was the same message he has presented for more than three years. He stayed on message. He did not change his tone or his passion for larger government, and for increasing the tax burden on all people to help pay for the ever increasing government payroll. The entitlement mentality of the bigger government crowd always shines through in what they say. When that ideology is laid over against the personal responsibility of free market capitalism, the evidence clearly shows the difference   

All excuses aside, when the messages of the two contenders for the White House lay out their core beliefs, one finds all solutions in bigger government and increased spending, the other finds solutions in free market, personal responsibility and individual choices with as little government involvement as is possible. When those two ideas are presented, the people are faced with a decision to make. From where I stand, the voters will decide which they like more, larger government or more personal responsibility.

If you watched the debate what did you think of the performance of President Obama and Mitt Romney? Tell us in comments. 

Follow Ray Newman on Twitter — @RayNewmanSr.

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