Special Editorial: Yikes”:
...Early on, we received this missive from a bright young conservative: “I'm watching my first GOP debate...and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!” As the evening went on, the craziness receded, and the demoralized comments we received stressed the mediocrity of the field rather than its wackiness. As one more experienced, and therefore more jaded, observer wrote: “I just thought maybe it’s always this bad...they’re only marginally worse than McCain and Bush.”
...But no front-runner in a presidential field has ever, we imagine, had as weak a showing as Rick Perry. It was close to a disqualifying two hours for him. And Mitt Romney remains, when all is said and done, a technocratic management consultant whose one term as governor produced Romneycare. He could rise to the occasion as president. Or not.
Red State also criticized Perry's inability to communicate and Romney's smooth-tongued insincerity:
...Perry’s third debate performance regressed from steady-if-unspectacular to has-problems-communicating. I am sure that many conservatives who watched the debate were unfavorably reminded of the last Republican President, and wondered whether they really wanted to spend another 4 or 8 years carrying water for someone who is incapable of defending himself from a hostile press in an articulate manner.
...[Romney] will sound good in the debates, he will push all the right buttons and say all the right buzzwords, but it will be anyone’s guess as to whether he really means them, or whether he will pull an abrupt about-face two years (or less) from now...
Ideally, we would have a candidate with the requisite experience, capable of beating Obama, who could both be trusted to keep his/her word and defend his position eloquently, but that candidate was not on stage last night...