The first presidential debate has “breathed new life and energy into the Republican Party,” Ohio Governor John Kasich, a former congressman and Republican presidential candidate in 2000, said during a conference call with reporters today.
“For the life of me, I can’t figure out what President Obama was doing,” Kasich said. “What was amazing is, he couldn’t figure out how to defend his own record and certainly didn’t offer any sort of a vision for what he wants to do.”
The debate in Denver has increased the intensity of Republican get-out-the-vote efforts and caused independents and undecided Democrats to take a second look at Mitt Romney because they got an “unvarnished” look at him, Kasich said.
“He was able to communicate that he is not only a smart guy who knows how to do things,” Kasich said, “but I think he touched people at a very personal level.”
Both Romney and Obama will campaign today in Ohio, a must-win state for the Republican which has trended in the president’s favor in swing-state polling — before the debate. With 67 million viewing a debate that has provided Romney a bounce in national polling, the next read of the Ohio electorate will be closely watched.