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The second presidential debate between Obama and Romney

Article added on October 17, 2012 ; live blogging from 02:13 Italian time, well before the begin of the debate

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Added at 04:43 Italian time
The last question was about the worst misperception of each candidate. Romney spoke of his compassion for people and how this came from his religious beliefs.

Obama said that he does not believe that the government creates jobs. Obama said that he believes in risk taking, but that everybody should pay a fair share and play be the rules. Than he stabbed Romney who had said behind closed doors that 47% saw themselves as victims.

Obama was more aggressive. The last statement were the last words of the debate. They brought him a bit back. I saw Romney as the winner, but it was not a victory as clear as in the first debate, but at times Obama did not look presidential, unlike Romney, who improved his standing as a potential president.


Added at 04:33 Italian time
“On day one, I will label China a currency manipulator”, said Romney. He wants trading partners to play by the rules. But the problem does not just lay elsewhere. Canada's business tax rate is 15%, ours is 35%, make it attractive to invest in the United States, Romney said. Obama answered that he agreed with Romney that corporate tax rates should be lowered. But that he would not allow jobs to be outsourced more easily.

Added at 04:27 Italian time
Regarding an assault weapon ban, Romney pointed out that, in Massachusetts, he had brought the pro- and anti-gun people together to come up with a bipartisan peace of legislation. Obama sounded lost, looking not very presidential, telling why education was important, not really responding to the assault weapon question.

Added at 04:19 Italian time
Romney pointed out that the Obama administration said for far too long that the Benghazi killings, with the U.S. ambassador among the victims, had been the fruit of a spontaneous demonstration whereas in fact it was a terrorist attack.

Obama pointed out to his record of hunting down Osama Bin Laden. The people responsible for the Benghazi attacks will be hunted down too.


Added at 04:09 Italian time
Romney said that legal immigrants were welcome, but that he would stop illegal immigration. Again, he pounded Obama for not having put forward an immigration plan in his first year as promised. Romney was slightly stronger than Obama, so far with the exception of letting people know where he would cut the budget. Obama pointed out the trillions of dollars of spending and tax breaks that Romney wanted to put forward, without telling in detail how to balance the budget. As mentioned, Romney rightly responded with Obama's record and countered with his own record. So far, Romney looks stronger, smarter and more eloquent than Obama, without crashing him.

Romney pointed out that his money had been controlled by a blind trust. Obama pounded Romney for distancing himself from parts of the Arizona immigration, while having put the guy who created the Arizona legislation in his team.


Added at 03:58 Italian time
Romney pounded Obama for his weak record. Obama wanted to lower unemployment to 5.4%. Obama wanted to cut in half the deficit, but doubled it. Obama has still not come forward with an immigration plan yet. Romney rightly attacked Obama on his broken promises and his weak record.

Added at 03:54 Italian time
A female voter asked Romney what the difference between him and George W. Bush was. Romney pointed out to his five point plan in detail and rode a fine attack on Obama who was right, Romney said, for pounding Bush and his half-a-billion dollar deficits, but then doubled those deficits once in office himself.

As for Obama, he attacked Romney for investing in companies doing business in China, building surveillance equipment to spy on their own people. Obama said that Romney was different from Bush because Bush did not plan to cut funding for Planned Parenthood.


Added at 03:42 Italian time
Regarding taxes, Romney said that he wanted to limit the tax breaks and deductions. balance the budget. Romney said that the top five percent of taxpayers will continue to pay 60% of all taxes under his plan. He would cut taxes for the middle class. Obama rode a fine attack on Romney's budget and tax plans, calling it a “sketchy deal”, because he does not come up with a fine print on how to do it. Romney answered that he always kept the budget as a businessman, he balanced the budget of the Olympic Games and he had for four years with a balanced budget as governor of Massachusetts, whereas Obama added five trillion dollars to the U.S. debt in four years (over one trillion in each of the four years).

On the energy front, Obama pointed out that U.S. oil imports are at the lowest level in 20 years. Romney said that oil prices are higher than when Obama took office, which proves in his eyes that the Obama strategy is not working. Obama answered that, when he took office, the economy was in freefall and, therefore, prices were lower.

Added at 03:14 Italian time
The town hall meeting has begun. The first question for Romney, by a first-time voter, worried about getting a job after graduating. Romney was detailed about what they did in Massachusetts for college kids, less specific about how to create jobs. Obama, who is (partly) responsible for the bad employment record, was a bit more specific about how to create jobs. Unfortunately, in only two-minutes, candidates cannot be to specific. In a follow up, Romney made a good point by saying that many people stopped looking for a job and, therefore, the unemployment number would be at 10.7% if they had continued looking for a job. Then Romney opened an flank to an Obama attack, by defending his statement to let the Detroit industry to get bankrupt, that's what the Obama administration did. Obama said, he had a plan to rebuild Detroit afterwards, whereas Romney is only caring about the rich. He got pretty nasty, kind of class warfare. Romney had no chance to answer. In Obama's view, does not have a five-point plan, just a one-point plan, have the rich play by different rules.

Added at 02:55 Italian time
A discussion about Obamacare vs. Romneycare would be helpful. In Massachusetts, Romney had to work with a Democratic legislature in a bipartisan effort to reform the state's healthcare. If Romney is now distancing himself from the Massachusetts healthcare program, this is for some good reasons. As governor, he vetoed eight provisions of the Massachusetts healthcare bill. All his vetoes were overriden by the state's parliament (dominated by Democrats).

Added at 02:37 Italian time
On October 5, the September 2012 unemployment data offered a limited relief to the Obama campaign: 7.8%, the lowest number since January 2009. However, the under-employment remains unchanged at 14.7%. The next numbers could be worse at the release of the next report. Nothing to be proud of.

On October 9, a leaked IMF report warned of the United States fiscal cliff threatening the world economy. Automatic cuts could be enforced at the end of the year because the bipartisan commission that should deal with the debt and deficit issue could not reach a compromise. $700 billion, some 4% of GDP, would be taken out of the U.S. economy at once.

Towards the end of 2012, the U.S. public debt stands at some 100% of GDP, and the budget deficit at 7% of GDP. In short, Obama's economic numbers remain weak.

What will the 82 town hall citizens ask the two presidential contenders regarding the economy, America's number one worry for the past four years?


Added at 02:13 Italian time  
Since President Obama was clearly beaten by Governor Romney in the first presidential debate 2012, the Messiah has to deliver without a teleprompter in the second presidential face-off.

Before the debate, the presidential race is almost a dead heat, with Obama still leading, but with the momentum on Romney's side. This can of course change with tonight's duel.

The October 16 debate-format is a town hall meeting at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. 82 uncommitted, registered voters from Nassau County can ask the two contenders questions. They were selected by the Gallup Organization. The moderator is CNN's chief political correspondent Candy Crowley (*1948).

Questions can be asked regarding both domestic and foreign policy. Decided by the flip of a coin, Mitt Romney will get the first question.

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Deutsch Politik Geschichte Kunst Film Musik Lebensart Reisen
English Politics History Art Film Music Lifestyle Travel
Français Politique Histoire Arts Film Musique Artdevivre Voyages

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© Copyright www.cosmopolis.ch  Louis Gerber  All rights reserved.