Obama, Romney face off in second presidential debate - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Obama, Romney face off in second presidential debate

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President Barack Obama President Barack Obama
Mitt Romney Mitt Romney
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. -

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney squared off Tuesday for the second of three planned debates.

The presidential debate was held in Hempstead, New York, with undecided voters asking questions. It was a nationally televised town hall-style encounter exactly three weeks before Election Day.

Highlights of the debate

Obama, Romney offer jobs pitch at start of debate

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney offered their jobs agenda at the start of the second presidential debate, responding to a college student concerned about finding a job after graduation.

Romney told the student that his question was one that's being asked by college student across the nation. He said his administration would try to make it easier for students to afford college and promote economic growth to help students.

Romney says the nation faces more debt and fewer jobs. He says, quote, "I'm going to change that."

Obama says he would build upon the 5 million private sector jobs created during his first term, pushing for more manufacturing jobs. The president said his policies aimed to improve the education system and promote a variety of energy sources.

Romney, Obama spar on energy policy

Republican Mitt Romney criticized President Barack Obama's energies policies and said his rival "has not been Mr. Oil or Mr. Gas or Mr. Coal."

The pair sparred on energy policy as they met Tuesday for their second debate, a town hall-style meeting with undecided voters in New York.

Obama says he wants U.S. energy policy to look ahead 20 or 30 years, and not just look at what lowers the cost right away. The president says he's all for oil and natural gas, but he says he will not focus on them exclusively at the peril of renewable energy sources that could create thousands of jobs.

Romney says Obama has fought new energy exploration on federal lands and that Americans have faced higher energy costs as a result.

Romney, Obama joust over tax plans and debt

Mitt Romney and Barack Obama both say their tax plans would benefit the middle class and spur job creation, and both are suggesting their opponent's plan would do the opposite.

Romney says cutting tax rates across the board would spur job growth. He says bringing rates down makes it easy for small businesses to keep more of their capital and hire more workers.

But Obama, who supports raising tax rates on upper incomes, says Romney's proposed tax cuts and his calls for increased military spending would add trillions to the federal debt.

Obama said to Romney, a former businessman, quote, "You wouldn't have taken such a sketchy deal."

He says the American people shouldn't accept that deal either.

Obama and Romney court female voters during debate

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are trying to appeal to female voters during the second presidential debate.

Responding to a question about pay equity for women, Obama notes that the first piece of legislation he signed made it easier for women to seek the same pay as men for doing the same work.

Romney says that as governor of Massachusetts, his administration had a number of women in senior leadership positions. He says many women have suffered job losses and moved into poverty during Obama's tenure and that creating more jobs would help women.

The president questioned Romney's commitment to women's health care, pointing to the Republican's vow to eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood. He calls health care a "pocket book issue" for women and families.

Voter asks Romney how he differs from Bush

Mitt Romney says he differs from fellow Republican George W. Bush on energy policy, China and deficits. President Barack Obama says the biggest difference is that his GOP rival is more extreme on social issues than Bush.

A voter during Tuesday's town hall-style debate asked Romney how he was different than Bush, who left office deeply unpopular. Romney says that he would govern under different conditions that would allow him to make North America energy independent from Arab and Venezuelan oil. He also says he would crack down on China's currency manipulation and cut the deficit by increasing trade.

Obama was ready with a quick retort. He says Romney, unlike Bush, would cut funding to Planned Parenthood and that Romney would pursue a more stringent immigration policy than Bush did.

Obama, Romney paint opposing picture of Obama term

President Barack Obama is ticking through promises kept as having halted the economic slide but is pledging to go hard after those campaign pledges from 2008 that he has not met.

In response at the presidential debate, Republican challenger Mitt Romney says Obama's unmet commitments have slowed the nation's economic recovery.

Obama listed small-business tax cuts, health care legislation and financial regulation as measures that helped stabilize the faltering economy.

Romney says Obama chiefly has failed to meet employment targets.

Obama, Romney tangle over immigration

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are clashing over immigration, with Romney accusing Obama of failing to reform the immigration system during his first term.

Romney says during the second presidential debate that the nation needs to stop illegal immigration, noting that 4 million people are trying to gain American citizenship legally. He says he won't grant amnesty to people who come to the U.S. illegally.

Obama says Romney has opposed the DREAM Act, a failed bill that would have provided a path to legal status for many young illegal immigrants.

He says Republicans in Congress have been unwilling to support comprehensive immigration reform and won't in the future with Romney as the "standard-bearer" of his party.

Obama says buck stops with him on Libya

President Barack Obama says the responsibility for what happened at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, falls to him and to no one else. Republican rival Mitt Romney says the president's team either didn't know all the details - or didn't tell the truth - about the death of four Americans there immediately after the attacks.

Obama and Romney met Tuesday for their second debate and sparred over the United States' response to the Sept. 11 attacks that killed America's ambassador of three others in Libya. Obama says he wants to find out exactly what made possible those four deaths and calls Romney's response offensive and designed to score political points.

Romney says the attacks represent the unraveling of Obama's foreign policy.

Obama calls for reintroducing assault-weapons ban

President Barack Obama is calling for reintroducing legislation to ban assault weapons.

In discussing the issue at the presidential debate Tuesday night, Obama said weapons that were designed for soldiers at war don't belong on the street.

After the mass shooting in Colorado last summer, Obama aides said that the president supports the ban that expired in 2004. But Obama had not called for reinstating it until the debate.

Republican candidate Mitt Romney repeated his opposition to banning assault weapons. He had supported a ban as governor of Massachusetts.

Romney says he's not in favor of new pieces of legislation on guns.

Obama strikes on Romney's 47 percent comment

During the first debate, President Barack Obama never mentioned Mitt Romney's videotaped remarks that 47 percent of Americans are dependent on the government. This time it was his closing argument.

Obama brought it up during the final question of the second debate, preventing Romney from answering.

Asked about public misperceptions of their candidacies, Romney said Obama's campaign tried to turn him into something he's not.

Romney said - quote - "I care about 100 percent of the American people."

Obama responded that when Romney said "behind closed doors" that 47 percent of the country considered themselves victims, "think about who he was talking about."

The president said that group included the elderly receiving Social Security, veterans, students and soldiers. He said: "If they succeed, I believe this country succeeds."

Obama comes out more aggressive in second debate

President Barack Obama is coming out swinging in the second presidential campaign debate, striking immediately at Republican Mitt Romney's opposition to the Democrat's handling of the auto industry bailout.

Obama was seen as having missed opportunities to make gains in the first debate with Romney two weeks ago. Romney was viewed as having won the debate.

Obama also says Romney's plan is to let the oil companies write the energy policies.

At least twice Obama has accused Romney of being untruthful. And he's addressed Romney directly, unlike their first debate in Denver, when Obama primarily addressed the moderator, while Romney criticized the president.

Obama and Romney clash on stage

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney have had a number of pointed exchanges during the second presidential debate, challenging each other on energy policy, pointing fingers and often speaking over one another.

Without a desk between them, the candidates approached each other on stage at one point during a discussion on energy.

As Romney answered a question on gas prices and oil drilling, Obama stood up and moved toward his Republican challenger. Romney turned to the president's direction and they quarreled as they stood only a few feet apart.

At one point, Obama sharply rejected Romney's arguments, saying, "Not true, Gov. Romney."

When Obama interjected with his energy positions, Romney responded, "You'll get your chance ... I'm still speaking."

Crowley's corrections highlight moderator's role

Candy Crowley's signature moment as moderator of the rough-and-tumble presidential debate came when she was called upon to referee a dispute over President Barack Obama's description of the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya an "act of terror."

When Republican Mitt Romney questioned the president's assertion that he called the incident an act of terror, Crowley said: "He did, in fact, sir."

"Can you say that a little louder, Candy?" Obama said, as the debate's audience broke into applause.

There was also applause when Crowley suggested that it took others in the administration as much as two weeks to abandon the idea that the attacks were related to protests over an anti-Islam video.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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