It was a rough night for President Barack Obama and Big Bird at the first of three presidential debates. It was even worse for Jim Lehrer.

The 78-year-old moderator, who is executive editor and former anchor of "PBS NewsHour," was torn apart by critics who said he lost control of the debate, held at the University of Denver, as the two candidates talked over him throughout the 90-minute exchange.

Lehrer’s debate moderation mauled by critics