It was as if the television political ads morphed into two human beings for the evening.

Nora O’Donnell was not as left leaning as some on the right had feared. I thought she came across very cold – much more of a referee than a moderator.

They are both running on their records. Hagan had a harder time defending hers than Tillis did his. He’s gotten things done – she hasn’t done much.

Hagan lost points with claims of her caring about women and Tillis doesn’t. That argument is tiresome. Women’s issues are much more than contraceptives. Lower taxes, improving economy, safe communities and ensuring a good teacher is in every classroom are issues women care about. Tillis wins that one.

Tillis needs to come out stronger defending his accomplishments in education. Spending has increased under his leadership and more importantly, reforms he championed give every child the opportunity to have a good teacher.

If you’d already decided who you are going to vote for, you probably believe your candidate won the debate. Who matters is the 10%15% of unaffiliated voters who are still undecided. Were they persuaded?

Tillis’s dark suit photographed bulky in that lighting.  If Hagan is trying to portray herself as the “women’s” candidate, she should consider a softer color.