This week's Grade: C

Republicans did well this [last] week. They have united behind their ticket, avoided game-changing blowouts and discovered that their presidential nominee is kind of like the rest of us, after all.

Mitt Romney hit a solid triple in his acceptance speech. Voters have to like the messenger before they will listen to the message, and he came off as likable and authentic.

But, as predicted, there is no real bounce for him. The Real Clear Politics average has the race tied at 46% - exactly, incidentally, where the Washington Times/Zogby poll had it last week. This is just not a big bounce year.

Now President Obama has to make the speech of his life to convince voters that he inherited a mess and spent money wisely in avoiding a worse crisis and in moving the national forward. A tough task at any moment - it certainly is even tougher because his speech (good or not good) may very well be drowned out by the Labor Department jobs report that comes out early the day after.

"I am giving the president's week a better grade than last week's D for two reasons: one is that Mr. Romney really did not get a bounce; the other is that he squared off with Dirty Harry and (in the opinion of this humble pollster), the president won.

Last week's grade: D