Obama Bounces Back With Strong Showing in Second Debate
By ALEX ALTMAN | @aaltman82 | October 16, 2012 |
With his presidency on the line, Barack Obama delivered a forceful performance in the second presidential debate Tuesday night, chiding Mitt Romney for failing to provide specifics about his policies and painting the Republican nominee as a more conservative version of George W. Bush.
Those who predicted the town-hall format of the Hempstead, N.Y., debate would inhibit the candidates’ attacks on each other were mistaken. In several sharp exchanges, including an early tussle in which the two candidates abandoned their stools and circled each other like wary prizefighters, Obama and Romney tangled over energy, immigration, Libya and their respective plans to shepherd the nation through a sluggish recovery.
From the opening bell, Obama pressed his opponent, who was widely judged the victor of their first showdown. Gone was the passive bearing that plagued Obama in that skirmish. When Romney touted the merits of his plan to create 12 million jobs, Obama scolded him for its haziness.
“We haven’t heard from the governor any specifics,” Obama said. “If somebody came to you with a plan that said, here, I want to spend $7 trillion or $8 trillion, and we’re going to pay for it, but we can’t tell you until maybe after the election how we’re going to do it, you wouldn’t have taken such a sketchy deal. And neither should you, the American people. Because the math doesn’t add up.”