msnbc | October 22, 2012
>> i want to take this to steve schmidt right now what i saw in terms of the stylistic and the leaning forward if i can steal our own phrase, was that mitt romney was his only real attack was when he did his riff you apologize and you're weak. obama i felt had a lot of different attacks on romney and romney refused to engage.
>> absolutely. mitt romney came across as reasonable, thoughtful, serious, presidential. not somebody who's going to rashly start another war in the middle east , person of cautiousness. more a reset to a traditional style of foreign policy . and i think you could see it wear on president obama during the debate. i think at times he was unable to conceal thinks compahis contest for mit t romney which i think was evident in the debate. but overall, i think that they both did an effective job tonight. i don't think it changes anything. i think there were no big mistakes on it. you saw mitt romney talk about the economy effectively tonight, message aimed to ohio. i thought he was very effective talking about china. whether you agree or disagree with his record on these issues. i think if you're a worker in ohio tonight, i think that his message would have had some resonance. so i think we have a very, very close race coming down the final two weeks. where now the focus becomes turning out the votes that both sides have spent months and months targeting. it's going to be very very close all the way to the very end.
>> i can tell from the look that you disagree.
>> i do. first of all, i think that mitt romney came in the last debate a bully. the bully got beat. so they said let's have a fair one. we'll have a third match. he came in tonight knowing he couldn't win so the strategy was jab and when he comes back, clench and hug and embrace. don't give him room to knock you out. just hold on until the end of the night. and he clenched all night trying to avoid a knock out every time obama pivoted back, clench, i agree with you. but you didn't say that yesterday, i agree with you, just don't knock me out and that's what he did tonight. he wanted to go out on his feet. for this man to stand there and just go the opposite of what he has said in various, clear statements just showed he wanted to survive the night. the other thing that i think was outrageous is that i think that he's suggesting economic development and all kinds of things for foreigners that he wants to cut at home. i wish that some of the things he would love to build in some of these nations that he wants to make friendly with us, he would do in south side chicago or harlem or southeast queens. he's very benevolent with wanting to help others and not here. i think the president was right about nation building . i also think he showed that he really missed foreign affairs in school. he knew very little about foreign affairs . i think when they got into really thick issues of foreign affair policies, he did not understand them. he didn't grasp them. he was going on talking points and slogans. i have no idea what the romney doctrine would be. it's almost enough to make you miss george bush . at least you knew he had a doctrine. no one knows what the in world, literally, romney is talking about.
>> in terms of his preparation, he did say that syria is iran 's route to the sea, which will come as a surprise to both syria and iran since they don't a border. and iran has its own coast line .