President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney squared off in yet another debate on Tuesday night that proved testy, tight, and memorable.
Political commentator George Will called it “immeasurably the best debate” in his memory. Pundits have suggested Obama won by making up much of the ground he lost in the first go-round by being too passive or polite, as this time Obama came out firing. Republicans have countered that their man, Romney, held his own, and that Obama got a little help from the moderator. And then, of course, there are those infamous “binders full of women” that became an instant Internet meme sensation once the words left Romney’s mouth.
As one of the fresher faces on the local political scene, Chris Girdler had a unique perspective on the debates. In fact, he’s likely one of the few Pulaski Countains who can say he’s actually met Romney before.
Girdler wears many hats for the Republican Party. He is District Director for Congressman Hal Rogers, helping manage the Somerset native’s affairs in the Fifth Congressional District while Rogers is often in Washington D.C. He also won a position in the State Senate, beating three other area candidates to claim the retiring Vernie McGaha’s old 15th District seat in May.
He’s been a part of The Republican Party of Kentucky’s Executive Committee, a president of the Pulaski County Lincoln Club, a Republican organization, and numerous other local civic organizations, making him very plugged into GOP politics.
Girdler met Romney last year at a dinner in Lexington. “I was very impressed with his humbleness and how easy he was to approach,” said Girdler.
It’s the qualities of Romney the man more than just Romney the Republican that Girdler appreciated in the candidate’s debate performance on Tuesday. Girdler sidestepped much of the rancor that goes along with politics, praising his man while being careful not to trash the Democratic opponent.