The Battle for Low Expectations

….has officially begun. The “Horse Race” style of political reporting is never more apparent than when you consider the battle by both campaigns to boost expectations for the other candidate. The logic is simple – you want the other guy to be expected to do as well as possible, so anything other than a home run can be portrayed as a defeat, and you want your own expectations as low as possible, so anything other than a Rick Perry “Ooops” is seen as a stunning upset victory. To wit:

A senior Obama campaign adviser said Mitt Romney has a leg up on President Barack Obama in the upcoming presidential debates.

“Mitt Romney I think has an advantage, because he’s been through 20 of these debates in the primaries over the last year,” Gibbs said Sunday on Fox News.


Expect these kind of expectation-management statements to crescendo over the next few weeks before the Oct 3 debate. Then kindly ignore them – both men are Harvard Law graduates who have been running for President since the 2007 primaries. I’ll post my own predictions for how I think the debates will play out a little later, but this is just your reminder that the expectation game has begun.


About thinklikeafox

I'm a Naval Officer living in Southern California. I hope to be attending law school in the next year or two, and I started writing this blog out of a desire to improve my writing and critical thinking skills after a couple years outside of academia.
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