• With: Judy Miller, Jim Pinkerton, Ellen Ratner, Richard Grenell

    PINKERTON: ... he would -- Andrea Mitchell and Ed and all the rest of them (INAUDIBLE) Listen, this was one of those epic political masters (ph), if you will. Jay Leno said it best, said; Only the replacement refs for the NFL think that President Obama had a good night.


    SCOTT: You know, that comment there that challengers always get a boost -- I mean, nobody seemed to want to say that Mitt Romney won because Mitt Romney won!

    JUDY MILLER, WRITE, FOX CONTRIBUTOR: Yes. It was amazing. I mean, when even, even MSNBC had to carry on as if someone in the family had died -- you know, it was an astonishing performance, but I think it was a rare moment of consensus, Jon, in the press because the press basically agreed Romney had won. And it must have been very painful for some of them to admit that, but it was obvious.

    SCOTT: Ellen, the media ahead of this were waiting for a Mitt Romney gaffe or a misstep. They were going to pounce upon that, and it didn't happen.

    ELLEN RATTNER, TALK RADIO NEWS SERVICE: No, it certainly did not. I was not one of the not mainstream liberal media but the middle-stream liberal media that was very upset with how the presidential did.

    And I actually have a theory about why he didn't do as well as he could have, and that is that this White House, as opposed to the Bush White House and the Clinton White House, has been much more protective. Usually, only the five or six television mainstream people get questions. He doesn't engage in the sort of back and forth.

    Even President Bush had off-the-records with radio people. And so therefore, he doesn't get to hear what some of the little-stream media have to say. And that would train him better.

    SCOTT: We put together a list of the recent interviews the president has done, I mean, hard-hitting events like People magazine and "Entertainment Tonight" and Glamour. He's -- he's had some...



    SCOTT: Joy Behar. That's for sure.

    RICHARD GRENNELL, FMR. SPOKESMAN, LAST 4 U.S. AMBASSADORS TO U.N.: I actually think it's a little bit even deeper than that, in that we saw Obama without a teleprompter. And the media are jumping to say, Oh, Obama just wasn't himself. I think he was himself. He was himself when he doesn't have a teleprompter. And Mitt Romney was himself, too. See, this is the exact Mitt Romney that the media have not wanted us to see!

    MILLER: Well, where has he been up until now?


    PINKERTON: Buried under a narrative -- this Tuesday's Washington Post before the new realization of the debate came in -- the headline is, "The staying power of 47 percent." Now, why is 47 percent staying? Because the media are putting it on the...


    MILLER: Well, but President Obama did not mention that. He did go on the $5 trillion dollar attack. So he did nothing to come back at him! It was -- I got to tell you, I've -- I've watched all these debates since Clinton's first debate, and I was in shock!

    GRENNELL: Again, the reason why he didn't bring it up, it wasn't on the teleprompter!

    MILLER: Well, that -- I've seen him in the press room, and that is not (INAUDIBLE)

    PINKERTON: And look, just to -- I actually agree with what Ellen was saying. Matt Latimer (ph) in The Daily Beast and Andrea Tantaros in The New York Daily News both said, Look, after four years of fawning press coverage, he's not ready for anything resembling a tough question or even, as Rick is suggesting, a tough opportunity.

    MILLER: There was just an attitude by Obama of aloof disdain. It was supposed to be part of a strategy of not being overly aggressive, but it just looked like condescension! And it felt terrible!

    SCOTT: Well, Ellen had her theory about why the president came off the way he did. We've compiled a few, and I just love these -- on MSNBC, Michael Eric Dyson claimed that in his opinion, the president was overly deferential to Mitt Romney because he was concerned that he would come across as an angry black man. That's what he said on MSNBC.

    Michael Moore -- you know Michael Moore. He blamed the president's lackluster effort on the coaching or the debate sparring that he got from John Kerry.

    And Al Gore -- this is my personal favorite, being from Denver -- Al Gore on his Current TV, the channel that nobody watches, said that Obama's poor performance could be blamed on Denver's altitude. So there you go.


    PINKERTON: It's always the climate with Al Gore!


    MILLER: ... he wasn't wearing enough earth tones.


    GRENNELL: But here's the thing, is President Obama has been to Colorado so much that even if that was the case, that he had a little altitude sickness, he certainly has adjusted. He's been campaigning more than he's been governing.

    PINKERTON: And -- by the way, Bill Maher (INAUDIBLE) throw him in there -- said that it was like Michael Jackson on tranquilizers.


    PINKERTON: I mean, this has been a brutal, brutal time, where the -- I think the left is afraid of what they're going to see in the next couple debates.

    GRENNELL: Yes, Andrew Sullivan...

    MILLER: You know what?

    GRENNELL: ... called it a disaster.

    MILLER: I actually...

    GRENNELL: I love that!

    MILLER: I actually think that he will do quite well in the next two debates. But can he do (INAUDIBLE)