Obama may have won the Boca debate battle but he knows he is losing the election war to Romney.
If you had been on an extended vacation for the past four years, you would have been forgiven for watching this debate and thinking you were viewing a President Mitt Romney being challenged by a pretender called Barack Obama.
Obama, although clearly in command of foreign policy issues, clearly came into the debate believing he had to score points and change the dynamic of the race.
In short, Obama started the 90 minutes here in Boca Raton, Florida believing he was losing his bid for re-election.
Romney, by contrast, felt he could play things safe. He was a kinder, gentler presence than he was in the second debate in Hempstead, New York, when he fought back hard against a hyper Obama desperate to make up for his catastrophic performance in the first showdown in Denver.
By and large, Romney succeeded in Boca. He came across as knowledgeable and reasonable and made no mistakes. In short, he passed the commander-in-chief test.