Conservative Members of Parliament Brian Jean (R) and Ed Komarnicki in the House of Commons.
Credits: REUTERS/Chris Wattie
OTTAWA - When asked who won Tuesday's U.S. presidential debate, Conservative MP Daryl Kramp says viewers will ultimately see what they want to see.
"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," he said.
A quick and dirty poll of MPs on the Hill Wednesday found truth to Kramp's words. Those of the Conservative persuasion by and large said the debate was a draw, while opposition parties found President Barack Obama the clear winner.
"No, I don't think there was a clear winner," Kramp said. "I think it was pretty close."
Conservative MP Stephen Woodworth believes the president and challenger Mitt Romney were well matched but, like Kramp, didn't see an obvious victor emerge.
"The dynamics of it were that President Obama set the bar pretty low for himself in the last debate so it would have been surprising if the headlines this morning hadn't read that he rose to the occasion," Woodworth said.
For NDP MP Paul Dewar, the debate was Obama's to lose and the president, he said, won it.
"Obama certainly made a come back," Dewar said.
And in a comment that must have resonated with most parliamentarians in Canada if not the world, Dewar offered some constructive criticism.
"I thought that there was a lack of addressing the question directly," he said.
Liberal Judy Sgro thought the town-hall style made the debate more interesting, giving viewers the chance to watch politicians interact with real people. But who won?
"Obama," Sgro said. "Mr. Romney came across as too desperate."
What stood out for NDP MP Niki Ashton was "how the Republicans are so clear about their agenda to roll back women's rights," she said.
"Mitt Romney doesn't want to talk about women in any real way, other than to turn the clock back to the 1950s."