Presidential candidates hunker before 2nd debate
Posted: October 16, 2012 at 10:02 a.m.
WASHINGTON The candidates will take questions Tuesday night on domestic and foreign policy from an audience of about 80 of the coveted uncommitted voters whom both campaigns are so furiously courting with just three weeks left until Election Day. The debate will be held at Hofstra University on New York's Long Island.
With both candidates preparing for the Tuesday night debate and Vice President Joe Biden attending former Senate colleague Arlen Specter’s funeral, Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan was the only member of either ticket out campaigning. He was taking a swing through Virginia.
In an interview with Virginia’s conservative radio host John Fredericks, Ryan said supporters who are working to get out the vote for the GOP ticket “have been just really doing the Lord’s work all throughout the state.”
“We’re doing it for our country,” Ryan said. “We’re doing it for each other.”
Romney picked up the backing of former independent presidential candidate H. Ross Perot. “We can’t afford four more years in which debt mushrooms out of control, our government grows and our military is weakened,” Perot wrote in an editorial announcing his endorsement Tuesday in the Des Moines Register.
Obama’s campaign turned to former President Bill Clinton on Tuesday to make the case against what it says is Romney’s $5 trillion tax cut. Clinton appears in a Web video for the campaign, picking apart Romney’s tax plan piece by piece, saying his approach “hasn’t worked before and it won’t work this time.”
The president’s campaign says Romney hid from his tax proposal during the first debate, and pledged Obama would be more aggressive in calling out his rival’s shifts on that and other issues this time around. Clinton, who has been praised by Democrats for explaining Obama’s economic arguments more clearly than the president himself, appeared to be laying the groundwork in the video released hours before the second face-off.
Tuesday’s debate audience of uncommitted voters was selected by the Gallup Organization. Moderator Candy Crowley of CNN will choose those who get to speak, after reviewing proposed questions to avoid repeats.
The final debate of the campaign will be Oct. 22 at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla., focusing on foreign policy.