By William Fisher
OK, Obama won. Clearly. Unequivocally. He displayed the tightly controlled anger and frustration at Romney's many falsehoods (though he owed one victory assist to CNN's moderator, Candy Crowley.
It was Candy who verified that when Governor Romney accused the President in the Rose Garden ascribing the US diplomatic deaths in Benghazi to "a demonstration" and not to a terrorist attack, he was plainly lying and he knew it.
But, unlike his previous appearance, Obama bounced into the ring raring to fight, to demonstrate his presidentialness and his knowledge of the critical issues. He did that. He won.
Now it's still early the next morning and I haven't had enough coffee to do a complete Lexis-Nexus word search, but the debate notes I made in real time may be just as good.
Those notes tell me there was not a single mention of the key words being so attentively awaited by the people who've been called "the professional left."
Guantanamo, indefinite detention, military commissions, due process, rule of law, the Obama "kill list" of those -- including citizens -- who can be snuffed out by a drone strike "authorized" by the President, years of military solitary confinement for "the leaker," Bradley Manning, torture of prisoners in the slammer at Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan, death in that country's notorious detention center known as the "salt pit," "extraordinary renditions" still being planned and executed, AT&T off the legal hook for invading privacy by collaborating with the Intelligence Community in spying on the phones and emails of people exercising plain vanilla Constitutional rights. No prosecutions of the CIA lawyers and interrogators who fashioned the legal rationale for torture and implemented what the world now calls "enhanced interrogation" methods.
In addition, here were the thousands of actions under the predatory talons of the FBI, the NSA, and so forth, plus a long litany of other violations of our own constitutional laws and those of other countries.