Presidential Debate 2012 Part 3: Analysis

Senior Washington Editor Rick Klein breaks down the final presidential debate.
3:00 | 10/23/12

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Transcript for Presidential Debate 2012 Part 3: Analysis
Welcome back and returning to our top story now last night's third and final presidential debate tonight joining us here with his take on things last night -- ABC news senior Washington editor Rick -- Rick always good to have -- welcome back thanks for doing this. What was your big take -- last night I know we know -- watching the horse race at this point so who was the winner last night do you think I think. Mitt Romney walks away the winner because he had more positive things happen to him it's part of this debate. I think Obama you can you can looking your scorecard -- he scored more singers maybe he wins on points. But in terms of the big takeaways Mitt Romney was on that stage looking presidential -- incredible as an alternative. To President Obama that's been his goal all along -- just presents himself as a credible alternative as a possible choice for undecided voters. And I think he accomplished that even on the commander in chief test and any follow -- -- -- -- alternative because so much throughout that debate you heard it hit. Heard Mitt Romney say. I agree with you Mr. President I briefing so really was an alternative and I think the average voter. Would see too much difference between these two men on foreign policy the Romney campaign calculation is this is gonna come downs of the economy and that's it. But you need to get buy in on the other issues and in at least be seen as a possible president. On the issues of commanders -- so I think his goal there was to do no harm. Not to seem like he was lobbing grenades at the Obama foreign policy where he had successes he was ready to applaud them. But -- to say look I it would -- what he's done and I'm gonna move it forward he he was the candidate of hope and and a presentation about positive vision I think more than President Obama but the. -- line is this debate was about foreign policy and and certainly as the president it occurred to me that he's had the advantage of four years a hot war policy. Briefings don't -- what is your sense in in terms of Mitt Romney's grasp of foreign policy. It's not a fair fight really entity president Alice -- -- -- four years ago when he was that when he was a senator going as John McCain who wasn't even fair and he didn't have any experienced it to really lean on. Governor Romney obviously doesn't have the depth of understanding or of of experience that present -- wallet but no challenger does but I think he -- he clearly has been well briefed on these things he's got a circle of advisors he was able to. Flash is -- -- -- facts may be too much at times from governor Romney. But I think mostly just show look he gets this stuff he did this come across the people I think is out of the mainstream when it comes the foreign policy and I think that was his goal. The as he moved to the middle somewhat -- terms and a seeming more mainstream more modern exists was. Very different language -- a lot more talk about peace and smiling less aggressive liability civil -- less aggressive that's different language what we saw during the primary -- questioning in you saw the Republican as the candidate of peace and peace groups Franken is returning to those things and did pull his punches today. Look I think at this have been the first to -- we would be talking about how Mitt Romney missed some opportunities for distinctions but it's not the first debate things change in this campaign -- the last couple of weeks it Romney's goal going in here wasn't it to blow things up and to start over again it was to continue the momentum President Obama as the ones that need to become more aggressive I think he did that as well. Did he -- Mitt Romney continue that momentum has clearly when he came into this debate. I I think he had that momentum going with -- and if he did does change anything that is a question that Iran is that a good couple weeks here and I don't think he did anything here -- it to turn that around entirely. I think President Obama and most gets a couple of points in the polls with his -- continuing to feel strongly about his candidacy feel a little bit better about his candidacy. We're back to -- we've gone through all of this we have essentially a tied race and our polling and other polling right now. And they duke it out on the beaches on the economy his last two weeks and it's possible this point in past what should say to overstate the importance. Of Ohio over these next two weeks that is the state that both campaigns have circled they're gonna return -- over and over again over the next weeks if your Mitt Romney it's almost impossible. To chart a victory that doesn't include Ohio and and for the Obama campaign. They know little -- Romney can't win without it so they can prevent that Romney victory by winning there that is the critical state an interesting week. It is seemed impervious to this national trend over the last couple weeks it's the one state among the battlegrounds the President Obama remains above 50%. All lies on the bus all. Ohio -- once again I don't know what we appreciate you being here ABC's. News senior Washington editor Rick -- -- Rick thank you always good to have you my friend thank -- yes.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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