News / USA

US Presidential Campaigns Offer Preview of Debate Rematch

President Barack Obama high-fives with a child as he arrives at the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport in Newport News, Va. October 13, 2012.
President Barack Obama high-fives with a child as he arrives at the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport in Newport News, Va. October 13, 2012.
Michael Bowman
Barack Obama’s re-election campaign is promising a more-engaged performance by the president in Tuesday’s debate rematch with Republican challenger Mitt Romney. Both campaigns are expressing confidence in their candidate’s ability to make a strong case to the American people in the second of three nationally-televised encounters.
It has been nearly two weeks since President Barack Obama gave what even his most ardent supporters regarded as a weak and uninspiring performance against a crisp-speaking and seemingly well-rehearsed former Governor Romney. Tuesday’s face-off in New York will provide an opportunity for the president to make a better case for his re-election, according to senior campaign adviser David Axelrod.
“I think he is going to be aggressive in making the case for his view of where we should go as a country, and a country that is built around a growing, thriving middle class,” he said.
Axelrod spoke on the U.S. television program Fox News Sunday.
Since the first debate, the president has seen a substantial lead in public-opinion polls evaporate, and Mitt Romney has spoken to larger, more enthusiastic crowds at campaign appearances.  Axelrod says the Obama campaign is not panicking over the turn of events.
“As I have said throughout, even when the polls were wildly positive for us, that these public polls are all over the place [fluctuate], and the reality of the race on the ground is that we are ahead," he said. "It is a little bit narrower than it was before the last debate, but we feel good about where we are.”
Meanwhile, Governor Romney will continue to deliver a message that is resonating with the American people, according to senior campaign adviser Ed Gillespie.
“The governor is going to do what he did in the last debate.  He is going to talk about his agenda," he said. "He is going to talk about his policies.  They are in very sharp contrast. There is a big-choice election here.”
Gillespie says Romney expects to face a more-assertive President Obama, but said whatever debating style the president employs will be of little consequence.
“Even if he changes his style - whatever political tactic the president settles on - he cannot change his record and he cannot change his policies," added Gillespie.
A third presidential debate next week will focus on foreign affairs.  Last month’s deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya is sure to be a major focus of the encounter. Republicans continue to accuse the Obama administration of incompetence and deceit in their handling of the tragedy.
Appearing on CBS’ Face the Nation program, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham accused the administration of placing political interests ahead of the national interest.
“They are trying to sell a narrative that the Middle East wars are receding and al-Qaida has been dismantled," said Graham. "And to admit that our embassy was attacked by al-Qaida operatives, and leading Libya from behind did not work, undercuts that narrative. I think they have been misleading us, but it [events in Libya] finally caught up with them.”
But Democratic lawmakers accuse Republicans of seeking their own political advantage.
“We will search the killers down and bring them to justice," said Congressman Elijah Cummings is the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee. "The one thing we must not do is treat it as a political football, and I think that is basically what is happening.  This conspiracy stuff is kind of ridiculous, to be honest with you.”
At a hearing last week, the committee heard from U.S. officials who had expressed concern about security at the Benghazi consulate and recommended a strengthening of security measures prior to the attack. 

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Comment Sorting
by: Anonymous
October 15, 2012 3:44 PM
In a response to Paul Poyfair, I'm sorry but your argument is nothing but ridiculous. You are blaming events that presumably were out of the administration's control, in ,I don't know, another country! Also the economic mess that Obama inherited when he took office in 2009 was already in full swing and who had overseen the crumble of the financial system. George Bush and his Republican counterparts.

Also, Obama's policies such as healthcare reform has benefited the lives of millions of underprivileged Americans and his other attempted reforms of the frankly well-off orientated system that the Republicans introduced to satisfy the people who fund their campaigns and ultimately in some way dictate laws that benefit them through pressure groups have been stopped because of short-sighted ridiculous opposition who are mostly made up of well-off, white snobs who couldn't give a toss about the underclass after they get their votes. Look back at your comment in 2016 if (and hopefully not) Mitt Romney takes office and see if he has done anything to benefit America, not just his corporate backers.

October 15, 2012 2:21 PM

by: Paul Poyfair
October 14, 2012 5:30 PM
Obama has failed on every front... The Economy, Energy, Foreign Policy, you name I, we are wose today than we were on January 20, 2009 when he took offoce...

Obama and his minions are essentually telling us that what we see is a lie... That things are better, that the Economy is improving, that the Energy Debacle is not that bad, and they have completely ignored Libya and the burning U.S. Embassies across the Mideast...

For those of us who are rational and not taken by heavy party bias the Obama positions simply don't work... They might as well be telling us that Red is Green (which it isn"t), that Manufacturing Plants, Homes and Auto's can operate solar pannels (they can't) and that the shooting at Ft.Hood that took nearly 20 lives, the rape and murder of the American Ambassador, and the 20 burning 20 burning Embassies in the Mideast are just figments of our imagination or "bumps in the road"...

This Administration has to go if we are going to recover as a nation and give our children and grand children a fair and equal shot at life (similar to the opportunities we had).

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