(WASHINGTON) — In a memo sent to surrogates on Thursday, Romney senior adviser Beth Myers set expectations for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney low — very low — compared to the “ample rhetorical gifts” of his opponent. The memo says President Obama has a “significant advantage” heading into the first debate.
“President Obama is a uniquely gifted speaker, and is widely regarded as one of the most talented political communicators in modern history,” Myers writes, calling Obama a “universally acclaimed public speaker.”
Myers’ memo is the latest in pre-debate jockeying by both campaigns to set their candidate’s expectations low, while raising expectations for their opponent.
Beyond his “natural gifts” for oratory, Meyers argues that Obama has “substantial debate experience under his belt.”
“This will be the eighth one-on-one presidential debate of his political career. For Mitt Romney, it will be his first,” she says. Obama, in her words, has had “extensive seasoning under the bright lights of the debate stage.”
Myers predicts that President Obama will use these advantages to go negative and attack Romney on the debate stage.
“Since he won’t — and can’t — talk about his record, he’ll talk about Mitt Romney. We fully expect a 90-minute attack ad aimed at tearing down his opponent.”
Myers concludes that the election will not be decided by the debates.
The first of three presidential debates is Thursday, Oct. 3 at the University of Denver.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Eric Bradner, Jeff Zeleny and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN
Cimaron Neugebauer, KUTV
Stephen Collinson, CNN
Kevin Liptak, CNN