As a resident of Massachusetts, Romney has always made my skin crawl. He's a sleazy con-man, gameshow host, overbearing arrogant corporate elitist.
I've also seen the many faces of Romney over the years, from the smooth talking Power Pointer to the shrill ideologue, the bully and the bumbling buffoon.
So Romney's performance wasn't a surprise -- it was a combination of Romney at his best and worst simultaneously.
In Romney, Obama is running against a disastrous douche -- but he's a disastrous douche who knows how to bamboozle people and close the sale when it matters.
The overall impression I had -- as objectively as I could be -- was that Romney was Nixonian. He had that air of desperate deviousness covered by a forced smile.
But he was also prepared, and powerful and slick. He was able to lie without blinking, and throw out so many contradictory facts that the truth becomes obliterated in a vague way.
The problem is that Obama was at his worst.
Had Obama been at his best on that stage Romney would have been shown for the jerk that he is --and Romney's "power" would have seemed merely obnoxious in that well-known Romney way.
But while Romney was at his best, Obama was at his worst. he let Romney get away with his shit without challenge.
I just hope this is a wake up call to Obama and his campaign and they get the message before it's too late.