The Hiller Instinct: Final Showdown
This is ground zero of Massachusetts politics. Tonight's debate could unlock a deadlocked race for governor. This will be the fifth debate involving Romney and O'Brien and if the past is any guide, then there will be a clear winner and loser here...
The first Romney-O'Brien face-off may be remembered as O'Brien's "mistake debate." Asked to defend her charge Romney was already promising jobs to his supporters, O'Brien couldn't…
Shannon O'Brien (D) Gubernatorial Candidate
"You know what, I made a mistake. I stand by my statement."
Romney reeled in his win the next day when O'Brien was forced to do what no candidate wants to…
"I'm offering an apology right now because I think that's what a leader has to do. I did make a mistake."
Shannon O'Brien, September 25
O'Brien rebounded a week later and won the second debate. She was spirited…
"Would you let me answer? I know you're so excited."
While Romney dealt his campaign a sleeping pill…
"It's very important that all of our citizens get a good nights sleep. And if we have to have them watching these debates, they're going to get bored to tears."
Mitt Romney (R) Gubernatorial Candidate, October 1
Realizing his mistake, the next day Romney agreed to more debates, including all the candidates.
"These people are in la la land... Absolutely la la land."
Barbara Johnson, Independent Candidate for Governor
The three other candidates dominated the third debate…
Carla Howell, Libertarian Candidate for Governor
"Small government is beautiful."
The winner was Jill Stein, the only real liberal in the race.
"Prior to tonight people were led to believe that there were only two choices, there were two choices from the big money parties, and I think tonight people have heard a much broader diversity of opinion."
Jill Stein, Green Party Candidate for Governor
The fab five made their final appearance in debate four.
"There are kooks everywhere. There are kooks everywhere."
Romney and O'Brien focused on each other, with Romney winning again. He cut; she bled…
"You lobbied for and got a $45,000 pay increase. Is that right or wrong?"
But after the debate O'Brien had to admit Romney was right…
"What Mitt Romney is that i raised my own pay, which I did not do. The governor and the legislature are responsible for that.
Andy Hiller, Political Editor
"I didn't dispute that."
I'd like to say this will be a "kinder and gentler" debate... Because the candidates have already thrown more than enough mud. But Romney and O'Brien are both worried about looking weak and want to be firm. My advice is that they be firm about their vision for the future and talk to voters, not each other.