The next Big Debate is at 9 Eastern tonight.
Obama is a lock to win the coveted "Most Improved" award.
However, all Romney has to do is be the guy he was at the last debate. Obama's task is much tougher. He will almost surely be more civil and subdued than Biden - excuse me, less rude and maniacal than Biden - which means a large segment of his base will be bitterly disappointed.
But just what advice is Obama getting - go out and be yourself? I doubt it: windy, pedantic and condescending probably won't win this.
Chris Matthews will want Obama to just shout "Bain Capital!", "47 percent!" and then "Liar!" in an endless loop. That won't sway the undecideds either.
Obama needs to be energetic and authoritative about his vision for America's future. That will be tough since he has yet to articulate on in this campaign. To be fair, I am setting aside his convention message, which amounted to assuring us he would put us on a difficult road to a distant place but he knew it would all work because it was the opposite of what Bush would have done.
Maybe Obama could study tapes of his 2008 debates? Maybe! I remember his patronizing "likeable enough" crack to Hillary, but in the course of three hundred debates I imagine a non-pedantic, non-condescending moment or two ocurred.
Obama needs to find a persona we haven't seen often in the last five years and maintain that for ninety minutes. I'll be surprised if he can manage it.