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Post Show Thoughts: Has the race changed?

This morning's Meet the Press featured a lively debate on our roundtable about where the presidential race stands and what role the first debate and new unemployment numbers have played in changing its makeup.

Last week's first debate was widely viewed as a win for Mitt Romney due to a lackluster performance from the president. Obama campaign re-election strategist Robert Gibbs admitted this morning that the president was unhappy with his performance. "It's not rocket science to believe that the president was disappointed in the expectations he set for himself."

Gibbs said part of the reason for this was that "we met a new Mitt Romney" that backed away from his past positions.

He also gave backhanded praise to what he referred to as "Mitt's masterful theatrical performance."

"He did a superb acting job," Gibbs said, adding "He did everything but learn tap dance."

Republican strategist Mike Murphy had a different take. "He lost the debate because he had nothing to say. ... [The Obama Campaign] has the thinnest reelection brochure ever."

Looking forward, Vice President Joe Biden will square off against his challenger Paul Ryan this Thursday in the first and only debate between the two men. 

Robert Gibbs said the Vice President is "anxious and ready to do this." Former GOP Presidential Candidate Newt Gingrich thinks Paul Ryan will be "respectful" adding that he will "not give an inch."

You can watch the entire program on our website, including a one-on-one interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger on his new book Total Recall. The former California governor weighs in on the current state of our politics and talks frankly about his marriage-ending affair; something he calls a "major screw-up."

We'll be back next week. If it's Sunday, it's Meet the Press.