'No Bloodshed' as Dems, GOP Voters Watch Debate
Morris County residents hung out with Patch Tuesday night at Tiffany's Restaurant in Montville for presidential debate viewing party.
Here's at least one thing everyone from any political stripe could agree on: whomever they were voting for before Tuesday's night's presidential debate at Hofstra University was the same person they were voting for after the 90-plus minute town hall event was over.
Almost a dozen Morris County residents hung out with Patch at Tiffany's Restaurant in Montville for the slugfest between President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the second of three scheduled debates before America votes on Nov. 6.
Most in attendance came in favor of Obama, while two registered Republicans held their own.
It was a point Montville resident Truscha Quatrone, who is running for freeholder in Morris County, said was important.
"We should not be scared to sit at the same table," she said.
Nor were the assembled folks at Tiffany's scared to speak their minds.
"I'm more mad at the Republicans than the Democrats," Gene Corno, also of Montville, said. Donning both a Ron Paul T-shirt and hat, Corno said, although a registered Republican, overall, "I'm a person. We've got to stop doing what we're doing."
That means potentially voting for someone, Romney, he does not enthusiastically support.
A similar reaction came from Elizabeth Mackee, of Caldwell. "I figured he would do less damage than Barack Obama," she said. Prior to the debate Tuesday, Mackee said she hoped Obama "will lose and show he's too far left."
Candidate enthusiasm was similarly wan on the other side of the aisle, two chairs down. Jeannie McGuire, a registered Democrat, noted her pending vote for the president was not coming enthusiastically, but coming nonetheless. "As long as people are educated on issues, that's what we need in our political discourse," she said.
The former New York City resident even noted a willingness to not vote down party lines blind, having voted for former Mayor Rudy Giuliani. "No Democrat was worthy of my vote," she said.
As the debate began, however, the room in Morris County, like those weighing in throughout the Twitterverse, put their full support behind their candidate.
Early on, as Romney spoke over moderator Candy Crowley's attempt to move along the debate, Corno said of the candidate's aggressiveness, "he's awesome."
"He's obnoxious," Democrat and former Montville Township Committee member Dan Grant said. "Shut him up."
When Obama's "I don't look at my pension because it's not as big as yours" line was delivered, the Democrats in the room laughed and cheered.
When Romney noted his ability to balance budgets in Massachusetts and for the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, Corno clapped.
When Obama brought up Romney's oft-maligned "47 percent" comments regarding those the former governor was writing off at the polls—recorded in secret by an attendee at a high-priced Romney fundraiser—several hoots, cheers and fist pumps could be seen around the table.
In the end, those who came in support of the president remained in his corner. Toni Bennett, of Florham Park, said she felt Obama "was a fighter tonight. I feel better about him."
"His party told him to wake up," Corno said. Still, if he has to pick one of the two candidates, his vote still was going to Romney. "He has the background needed to get the country going."
"He's a businessman," Mackee said of Romney. "He'll do a much better job."
Quatrone, like Bennett, expressed pleasure in Obama's performance, which showed "just how qualified he is to be President of the United States," she said. "He's really telling a story that needed to be told."
With the second debate in the books, not much had changed regarding the opinions of at least those gathered at Tiffany's Restaurant.
So, was it then a success?
"Hey, there was no bloodshed," Grant said with a laugh.