ATLANTA -- The consensus from our experts who watched the debate Wednesday night was mixed.
However, many in the group of nine believe that Mitt Romney won the exchange, though not convincingly. Here are some excerpts from what they had to say:
Dr. Kendra King, Oglethorpe University-
"Tonight I think it was a dead heat for me personally. The President came out and did what was expected to be presidential. I think Mitt Romney did surprise us he was very aggressive. He hit some homeruns in a few areas. But again I feel the people cannot get caught up in sound-bites."
Dr. Neale Chumbler, University of Georgia-
"The most definitive (issue) was how aggressive Mr. Romney came about the healthcare plan of Mr. Obama. He kept hitting home about the 716 (billion) dollars being cut from Medicare and Mr. Obama didn't really counter that to some extent."
Professor Andra Gillespie, Emory University-
"Rhetorically, I think this was pretty close to a draw but I think Gov. Romney ends up winning. Gov. Romney having had a couple of bad weeks really needed to dig himself out of a hole, he needed to appear human and he needed to appear presidential and I think he did all of that this evening."
David O'Dell, Mercer University Professor of Law-
"President Obama made a couple of very telling statements. One, was he said Medicaid was the big driver of our federal deficit right now. His answer to partisanship at the end of the debate was that he would just say no more. Neither answer seemed to be politically thoughtful at some level."
Daniel Franklin, Georgia State University-
"It was a draw and that adds up to a loss for Romney. In fact, I'll go against the other members of the panel and I don't think it's going to move the polls at all. If it moves in any direction it moves toward Obama."
Rosemary Cunningham, Agnes Scott College-
"If there was a winner, I probably would say it's Gov. Romney; but it wasn't the win he needed. He needed a huge win."
Dr. William Boone, Clark Atlanta University-
"Overall, it was a draw. I don't think Romney did anything to scar the President. I don't think Obama did anything to scar Romney."
Roger Tutterow, Mercer University-
"Well I'm not sure either side can claim a clear victory. Certainly, I think Gov. Romney established credibility. I think President Obama tried not to make any mistakes and did a pretty good job at that. I think it also underlines the degree both parties understand that this is an election about the middle class and this is an election about job creation. And most of their policies were focused on that."
Dr. Hector Butts, Morris Brown College-
"Logic and history will tell us that government must play a part. In that regard President Obama pointed out clearly his expectations in regard to education. It is known that this country has to retool itself in that regard because the economy will not be the same."