◼ Romney Holds Advantage Tonight, Regardless of Format - Mark Salter/Real Clear Politics
Romney doesn’t need to elevate his game. He just needs to be as assertive, gracious and unflappable as he was the last time -- not an easy task but one we now know he’s capable of achieving. No matter how improved the president is tonight, he’s unlikely to reverse Romney’s momentum. I believe the last debate changed the race fundamentally. It’s now trending in Romney’s favor. If he can find that sweet spot again, he’ll further reduce the likability gap with his opponent, and I think he’ll be the favorite to be our next president.◼ Dem strategists see campaign in peril, say Obama must step up - Paul West/Chicago Tribune
◼ Candy Crowley will disregard debate agreement on Tuesday - Alicia M. Cohn/The Hill
◼ If O gets ‘aggressive’ - John Podhoretz/New York Post
◼ Adviser says Romney will ask Obama to 'man up' on Libya attack at debate - Justin Sink/The Hill
◼ Romney v Obama: when it comes to debating, Obama might be the new Messiah but he's no Bill Clinton - Tim Stanley/The Telegraph
Tonight is round 2 of the great presidential debates of 2012. Although this one will be less like a boxing match and more like a 90-minute edition of Oprah. The format is ordinary people asking questions from the audience, which means that the goal of the evening is empathy, empathy, empathy. Rather than scoring points against each other, the candidates have to show that they understand people’s problems, care about them and have solutions. It’s like a talk show for megalomaniacs.