Last night President Obama and Mitt Romney came together to talk about "crippling" Iranian sanctions, Syria's coastline, bayonets, horses, teachers—pretty much anything but global warming and the war on drugs. The president was aggressive in attacking Romney's murky foreign policy prescriptions, and wielded a sardonic katana whenever the governor repeated an inaccurate Republican soundbite. Romney used the word "peace" 12 times, while Obama furiously scratched "MITT" off his Kill List.

Within the first few minutes of the debate, it was clear that Romney would not go on the offensive: the candidate missed a huge opportunity to criticize the president on the Benghazi attack, while Obama brought up Romney's designation of Russia as America's "number one geopolitical foe," and used it to deride the former governor: "The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back — because the Cold War has been over for 20 years."


Sure, the president wanted to keep a residual force in Iraq after the "withdrawal" just like Romney did, until the negotiations broke down, but HOT DAMN what a zinger! (Oh and Mr. President, the comedian standing in front of the brick wall at the Chuckle House wants his closer back.)

The president's next cutting moment came when Romney repeated the distorted claim that it's "unacceptable" that the Navy has fewer ships than it did in 1917. After Obama utters the phrase that will likely be used as a couples Halloween costume by insufferable assholes, he states, "The question is not a game of Battleship where we're counting ships, it's what are our capabilities?"


Naturally the mention of one board game deserves another, and Romney's sole act of aggression focused in on a variation of the title of his own book, the president's alleged "apology tour," which the president called "a whopper" (see his response at around 2:00).


The president ends his counterattack in describing the sanctions in place against Iran: "We put in the toughest, most crippling sanctions ever." Take THAT, innocent Iranian civilians!

Romney made a few strange comments—referring to participants in the Egyptian revolution as "freedom voices," describing Latin America's potential as "time zone, language opportunities,"—but this was largely the president's show. Obama was even the first to steer the conversation towards domestic policy, which ended up seeping into at least a third of the debate.

With voters in states like Ohio, which has a 50% chance of determining the entire election, caring more about what happens here than whose family is bombed in a remote area just over the Pakistan border, the president could likely feel David Axelrod kicking his shin under the table to talk about job growth.

Anyway, here's how Romney thought he did.