Obama, Romney Face Off in Second Presidential Debate

The Presidential candidates met for a town-hall style debate at Hofstra University in New York.

President Barack Obama and Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney sparred Tuesday night over immigration, the economy, energy production and foreign policy during the second of three Presidential debates before Election Day.

The debate, held at Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY, went over the allotted 90-minutes and featured a number of sharp exchanges between the two candidates, who interrupted each other on more than one occasion.

Virginia Voters React

Delegate Scott Surovell (D-44th) was impressed with Obama’s performance Tuesday night, saying the president was “back” after his more restrained performance during the Denver debate two weeks ago.

“Candy Crowley's instant fact checking of Mitt Romney on President Obama's Rose Garden statements will be remembered for a long time,” Surovell said in an email immediately following the debate.

Prince William County Supervisor Frank Principi thought the moment stood out as well.

"Romney was rude and disrespectful and even questioned the President's integrity and blamed him for the loss of life," he said in an email. "That was a cheap shot for political points!"

Surovell also thought that Virginia voters would remember “Romney talking about how he needed ‘binders full of women’ from third party groups to find women for his cabinet.”

Delegate Rob Krupicka (D-45th) agreed that Obama was the victor.

“The President clearly won,” he said. “He was presidential, passionate and clear about his policies. He took charge and never backed down. Romney seemed flustered.”

Steve Hunt, a former Fairfax County school board member and state senate hopeful, was unimpressed with Crowley’s moderation, which he said supported the President “considering how many times the moderator allowed [him] to have the last word and actually engaged in the debate to defend [him].”

Hunt said Romney did the best he could in a “2 against 1” contest that resulted in a draw.

Romney’s discussion of energy, including drilling off the coast of Virginia and the use of coal, will resonate most with votes in the Commonwealth, Hunt wrote in an email after the debate.

“This would be a major job producer and job protector for Virginia as well as provide more funding for transportation,” he said.

The Economy

The candidates addressed employment for America’s young people right off the bat.

Romney said he planned to create more jobs so that America’s youth didn’t have to struggle to find work like they have in recent years. Obama, on the other hand, said he wanted to invest in manufacturing jobs, citing his bailout of the automobile industry as a sign of his commitment.

Obama once again took Romney to task for his tax plan, which he said would mainly provide relief for America’s wealthiest citizens.

“Governor Romney doesn’t have a five-point plan,” Obama said. “He has a one-point plan.”

But Romney said the President’s accusations weren’t true.

“I’m not looking to cut taxes for wealthy people, I'm looking to cut taxes for middle class people,” Romney said. “For me this is about jobs. I want to get the economy going again.”

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, who was in New York for the debate and spoke with Patch afterwards, said it's the economy and gas prices that will be driving voters to the polls come November.

"You don't run from the issue. You state your principle. You state what you believe in," McDonnell said.

Attacks in Libya

The Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya, which resulted in the deaths of four Americans including Ambassador Chris Stephens, was a topic of discussion for the second time in as many debates.

Romney, echoing his running mate’s sentiments from last week’s Vice Presidential debate, said the current administration’s management of the Middle East was falling apart. He criticized the Obama administration’s initial handling of the attack, after officials blamed it on protests in the wake of an anti-Muslim Youtube video.

“This strategy is unraveling before our very eyes,” he said.

But Obama said he was ultimately responsible for the lack of strengthened security during the tragic, fatal incident.

“The day after the attack, governor, I stood in the Rose Garden and I told the American people in the world that we are going to find out exactly what happened,” Obama said.

Romney took Obama to task for taking two weeks to call the attack an “act of terror.”

But the debate’s moderator, CNN correspondent Candy Crowley, confirmed that Obama called it such during his speech in the Rose Garden. She was also careful to note that it still took two weeks for the Youtube video theory to be cleared up.

Employment for Women

The candidates also covered fairness for women in the workplace.

Romney responded by describing his method for selecting his cabinet when he took office as Gov. of Massachusetts. He said the applicants who showed up were all men, and when he asked if there were any qualified female candidates, his staff brought him “binders full of women.”

"Binders full of women" quickly began to trend on Twitter.

Obama noted that he signed equal-pay legislation soon after taking office.

Anne October 17, 2012 at 05:56 PM
Obama clearly was the winner and brought home some very important points.
Lee Hernly October 17, 2012 at 06:00 PM
@Watts - 3 other fact checkers also noted that Mitt Romney was right. remember when I showed you Politifact has a selection bias toward GOP? See: Politico: http://youtu.be/oYl57y7IKyk Washington Times: http://www.washingtontimes.com/blog/watercooler/2012/oct/16/green-factcheck-obama-did-not-call-benghazi-act-te/ Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/election-2012/wp/2012/10/16/fact-check-libya-attack/?wprss=rss_campaigns
T-Bird October 17, 2012 at 06:08 PM
Anasarka October 17, 2012 at 06:17 PM
I recently read the transcript from the Univision question and answer session with the President. He said that one thing he learned over the last 4 years is that Washington cannot be changed from the inside. So I am confused as to why he would want to run for President again. Governor Romney is trying to assist him in getting out of Washington where, by his own comment, he would be in the best position to affect change. Why
Watts October 17, 2012 at 09:03 PM
First of all, those aren't fact checkers, they are bloggers who have posted the weakest arguments that I have ever heard. The big discrepency is supposed to be because he referred to it as an "act of terror" versus an "act of terrorism." That is really what you are hanging your hat on? Aren't you embarrassed that people that you know may actually be reading what you post? If my points and arguments were that weak, I wouldn't even share them with my cat; never mind post them to the internet.
Mr. Brown October 17, 2012 at 09:46 PM
Watts October 17, 2012 at 10:25 PM
Actually, even more in the context of the debate, Romney didn't question him if he said that it was an act of terrorism, but specifically questioned if Obama had referred to it as an act of terror, which is exactly the wording that Obama had used. Here it is to refresh your memory... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WcB5tcSXjPY So what Romney was questioning if Obama had said, ends up being exactly (down to the exact words) what Obama had said.
Lee Hernly October 17, 2012 at 11:07 PM
That is a flat-out lie Watts. The President, in an earlier paragraph referred to the murder of Americans as a 'brutal attack' and a 'terrible act'. He then goes on to talk about 9/11 and other attacks then says '...these acts of terror...' (plural). Maybe that's why Candy Crowley corrected herself after the debate.
Watts October 17, 2012 at 11:21 PM
Crowley did not "correct herself" after the debate. What she did was reiterate exactly what she had said during the live debate, which was to also acknowledge what Romney was confusing with what Obama had said the following day, which was what the final investigation determined two weeks later. And while I thought that "ism" was a weak argument, for you to now try to break the difference down to the letter "s" as being the big difference is nothing short of goofy. He is still referring to it as an act of terror, no mater if it was singular or as an act of terror within a history of such acts. Who is your normal audience on that whack site of yours? Braindead lemmings? If you have found an audience that lacks even the most fundamental of critical thinking skills, then you just keep rocking right along with that little project of yours at redalexandriava.com (really roles off the tongue). But if you start to drag that kind of nonsense into public forums, don't expect that most people of even moderate intelligence or above are going to see those arguments as anything but laughable.
Lee Hernly October 17, 2012 at 11:44 PM
Thank you Watts. When Liberals have no record of success to defend then attack the other side eh? I mean when Candy Crowley admits Romney was right, the Washington Post fact checker says he was right to a point, and even Mike Allen at the left-wing Politico admits Romney's argument is arguable, then maybe I have a worthy argument and not a 'goofy' one? As for the 'braindead lemmings,' maybe that's why traffic is up 1200% year to year on the 'whack' site I contribute on. Fact is, as far as this former Liberal is concerned, Romney stood toe to toe with the leader of the free world and prosecuted Obama's record successfully on a national stage. Maybe that's why Gallup has Romney now outside the margin of error?
GetReal October 18, 2012 at 12:47 AM
Romney stood toe-to-toe with Candy Crowley and lost. Maybe now in defeat, he will support equal pay for women.
Watts October 18, 2012 at 04:54 AM
jacka$$, just go to the video of the debate moment and Crowley admitted that Mittens was "right," but just not articulating it correctly. She just needed to move the thing along, because he was having a brian fart in front of all America and wasn't letting it go and was wasting time. And guess what, the sale of vinyl is up about 20,000%, but 20,000% or 1200% of nothing, still basically equals nothing in the larger scope of things. So if this is all about you wanting to get over some ED issue by chest thumping this out here, then like I sad before, rock on with your bad self. But you are the one with an actual name on the line out here. If you can face your neighbors, etc. with this type of goofy stuff, then all the better for you. But don't delude yourself that you aren't also a laughing stock to a much larger audience than your 1200% (which I am sure is hits and unique user views) increase in traffic.
Barbara Glakas October 18, 2012 at 09:58 AM
Lee, Again, you are not telling the whole truth about the fact-checking on this Libya question. PolitiFact, for instance, rated Romney’s comment about Obama’s Rose Garden response as “Half True,” not “False.” The individual Post Fact-checker in your video said it was “arguable.” And all this revolves around Obama’s Rose Garden words of “act of terror,” versus “terrorism.” And some people are confusing what Obama said versus what the U.S. Ambassador said. I suppose one could “argue” whether or not Obama was referring to the Libyan embassy attack when he said “acts of terror,” or whether he just happened to be referring to world terrorism in general. But why was he in the Rose Garden making this speech to begin with? To talk about terrorism in Israel? To talk about 9/11? To talk about Afghanistan? No. He was specifically there with Hilary Clinton to address the embassy attack in Libya that had occurred hours before. Regardless, what would you have preferred him to do? --- go on national TV and make some emphatic remarks about the yet-to-be-investigated event just to meet some arbitrary time frame of his political opponents? (Kind of like Romney did, when he was making critical remarks about the events unfolding at the embassy before he even knew that the ambassador had been killed?).
Lee Hernly October 18, 2012 at 10:31 AM
Did the President specifically call the Benghazi attack a 'terrorist attack' or an 'act of terror' in his remarks? No. Frankly, IMHO, the President needs his speechwriting team to get their MOJO back. So, as I said WaPO, Mike Allen, Candy Crowley and as you point out about Politifact, agree that Romney is right up to a point. "Regardless, what would you have preferred him to do? --- go on national TV and make some emphatic remarks about the yet-to-be-investigated event just to meet some arbitrary time frame of his political opponents? (Kind of like Romney did, when he was making critical remarks about the events unfolding at the embassy before he even knew that the ambassador had been killed?)." As we know by now, by the time Mr. Romney & the President spoke, we do know that the Administration knew it was a terrorist attack by the time of these remarks. So the question remains, why send Ambassador Rice out to the Sunday talk shows and claim it was about a movie then?
Lee Hernly October 18, 2012 at 10:40 AM
The Lilly Ledbetter Act actually makes it harder for women. Maybe that's the reason there are more women out of work under this President due to his empty binders? Not too mention how the Obama White House has been identified as a hostile work environment and they also pay women significantly less than men. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2128513/Women-paid-significantly-Obama-White-House-male-counterparts.html Leading by example?
Kathy Keith October 18, 2012 at 12:02 PM
Having watched all (almost four hours) of the State Dept. hearings last week, it is clear that the administration knew in "real time" that the attack in Benghazi was not the result of a protest. They had video of the attack and it was clear that it was quiet before it occurred. It is also clear that there was a lot of intelligence in the months prior to the attack that indicated that Benghazi was a dangerous place for Westerners. It was known that Al Queda affiliates were active in the area. Other attacks had been attempted. The problem is not so much what Obama said in the Rose Garden, but what he -and his administration- said afterward. He could have said in the Rose Garden that we do not yet know a lot about this attack, but that, considering that it happened on 9/11, we do have serious concerns that it was a terrorist event. And, then he could have stuck to that story. Instead, he chose to condemn a video repeatedly over the next two weeks. Why? That is the question. Why couldn't the government get in to "secure the area?" Reporters did. I know that the intelligence community works undercover and that we may not know-or need to know-everything that is going on. However, the administration insulted the intelligence of the American people. I think the video is a red herring. My personal opinion is that the administration did not want us to know that al Queda is alive and well after a week of "Bin Laden is dead and al Queda is on its heels".
Anne October 18, 2012 at 01:46 PM
That will never happen GetReal. Romney will work to repeal the Lilly Ledbetter act right after Obama care, tax cuts for all (then tax away our home interest while allowing the right to keep their charitable contributions). Romney and Ryan have zero respect or caring for women, children after they are born and gay men. Guess they dream alot.
Anne October 18, 2012 at 01:47 PM
Watch out everyone Lee and Kathy will tell you how stupid you are if you don't think like they do and agree with all of their preaching. After all "They know it all". Ask em and they will tell you as much too!... ;)
Lee Hernly October 18, 2012 at 05:11 PM
@Watts - Even CBS News admits, in the President's remarks the day after the attack, when they knew already it was a terrorist attack, he tried to blame the video in the Rose Garden. http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50133344n
Larry McDorchester October 19, 2012 at 12:45 AM
Do we need equal pay for women? Or, do we need binders full of women?
GetReal October 19, 2012 at 01:58 AM
I once saw a binder full of women.....at the Chicken Ranch in Nevada. I'm not clear on what binder Romney was looking at?
Jonathan Erickson October 19, 2012 at 10:38 AM
A little less time at the bar will help with your clairity. I am glad to see you support our working women and I wonder if Obama has any pension money invested there?
Lee Hernly October 19, 2012 at 11:35 AM
Compared to the empty binders President Obama has given women over the last 4 years? How many more women are out of work because of his policies? Lest we not forget that the Obama White House was ID'd as a hostile work environment and the fact that the Obama White House pays their female employees for the same work 18% less than their male counterparts.
Joe Brenchick October 19, 2012 at 11:40 AM
Anyone who truly thinks Obuma actually won that last debate needs to grab their bag of pixy dust, hop on their unicorn and ride off to never-Never Land!
Carolo October 19, 2012 at 07:22 PM
Romney toots his horn he balanced the budget as Governor but what he doesn't say is it is law the budget had to be balanced every year. It's not like it was a choice he had. But I can understand why he is 15 points down in his own state. Have you read of his cuts and his tax and fee increases? Also WHO was cut. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Governorship_of_Mitt_Romney I just don't see this as anything to brag about when people have to leave the hospital within 20 days no matter how ill they are. On Romney "saving" the Olympics? That really didn't happen either. The Olympics was in the red $379 million but he got Federal Funding of between $400-600 million that put it back in the black and of course millions from big cooperations and especially Utah churches. To hate Federal Funding to save jobs and car companies is bad but it's OK with him to save the Olympics? hummmmmm
Jonathan Erickson October 19, 2012 at 08:13 PM
so you do not like his methods?
Colter95 November 03, 2012 at 06:31 PM
I saw Obama yesterday claiming the new job numbers are proof that his policies are working and that we are in an economic recovery... Fact is, that is not the truth, or even close to the truth... First, the unemployment rate ticked up to 7.9% and the year-to-date monthly average of 157,000 payroll jobs is barely enough to keep up with population growth -- much less make up for the 8 million jobs lost during the Great Recession. Second, the so-called real unemployment rate (U6) remains elevated at 14.6%, albeit down from 14.7% the prior month. Similarly, the labor participation rate is at 63.8%, up from its multi-decade low but still incredibly weak. Third, average hourly earnings fell a penny in October and average hours worked fell to 34.4 from 34.5 in September. Stagnant wages means "we're not generating income," Reinhart says. "That's a problem in terms of the durability of an economic expansion, which is usually fueled by consumption. To get consumption you've got to generate income." Also, just look at your checkbook. We are paying a lot more for everything now than we did in 2008. The price of gas has doubled. At the same time, wages have gone down, and that's if you're lucky to have a job. In 2008, 25 banks went out of business. In 2012, 48 banks have gone out of business. Almost double the amount. Does that sound like recovery to you? Don't believe the Obama lies!! Romney/Ryan 2012
Colter95 November 03, 2012 at 06:32 PM
Please don't let Obama sweep Benghazi under the rug... Lets not forget those four who were left to be slaughtered in Benghazi... Do not reward Obama for this epic failure… Every voter needs to read this excellent article... Very well worth your time... http://spectator.org/archives/2012/11/01/benghazi-obamas-core-deceit/ These are pretty good as well: http://www.gazette.com/opinion/romney-146793-obama-benghazi.html http://frontpagemag.com/2012/dgreenfield/benghazigate-obamas-many-lies-about-libya/ http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/50657 http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Journalism/2012/10/25/CBS-Busts-Obama--and-Itself-Hidden-60-Minutes-Clip-Proves-White-House-Lied-About-Benghazi Romney/Ryan 2012
The Anti-Alinsky November 03, 2012 at 07:51 PM
TOP TEN REASONS NOT TO RE-ELECT BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA ==================================================== 10)Obamacare has increased my insurance premiums by 12% just for next year! 9)2009 Apology tour. (where were Springteen and Katy Perry then?) 8)27% more each year in Federal spending 7)Government Motors 6)Jobs created by B.O.'s stimulus only cost us $110,000/job (if you believe B.O.'s jobs numbers) 5)Median household income down $4,000/yr 4)46.7 MILLION people on food stamps. 3)Deficit doubled, not halved. 2) 6 TRILLION in new debt (3 times Bush's rate) and the number 1 reason not to re-elect Barack Hussein Obama . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1) Unemployment still at 7.9%. (not counting people that gave up looking)
The Anti-Alinsky November 03, 2012 at 07:51 PM
TOP TEN REASONS TO ELECT MITT ROMNEY ==================================== 10) Improved Massachusettes economy while Governor 9) Knows how to create jobs (actually that's all we need, but let's continue) 8) Has proven he can work with others across the aisle (instead of ramming bad legislation through without reading it or letting other's read it) 7) Will repeal Obamacare (maybe I can get my 12% back) 6) Went out of his way to hire qualified women in his cabinet 5) Will ease burdensome regulations that hurt this economy while keeping productive ones in place 4) Not only delivered a budget, but balanced it four times. 3) Actually had a plan to improve the United States 2) Will put United States interests ahead of all else and the number 1 reason to elect Mitt Romney . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1) Unemployment still at 7.9%. (not counting people that gave up looking)


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