In the second of three presidential debates on Tuesday night, President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney faced off in a town-hall-style debate at Hofstra University.
Speaking to a crowd of undecided voters from Nassau County, the two candidates routinely reiterated many of the ideas they delineated in the first debate and were not bashful to criticize the other.
“Both candidates dropped pleasantries and were on attack, sometimes at the [expense] of answering the question,” said LSP sophomore Griffin Simpson.
Jeremy Epstein, 20-year-old college student, asked the candidates how they can reassure him that he would be able to support himself after college. In response, Romney seized the opportunity to attack the president’s record.
“It’s not going to be like the last four years,” Romney said. “The middle class has been crushed over the last four years, and jobs have been too scarce.”
Heavily criticized for his lackluster performance in the first debate, Obama was more assertive this time around in refuting Romney’s statements.
Obama scrutinized the veracity of Romney’s critique about his cuts on permits and licenses for domestic oil production.
“Not true, Governor Romney,” Obama said. “You had a whole bunch of oil companies who had leases on public lands that they weren’t using. … And so what we did was take away those leases. And we are now reletting them so that we can actually make a profit.”
The president also shouldered complete responsibility for the attack on the American embassy in Benghazi although Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton took the blame the previous day.
“I’m the president and I’m always responsible, and that’s why nobody’s more interested in finding out exactly what happened than I do,” Obama said.
The two candidates also jabbed each other over their tax policies. Obama said Romney’s policies would add up to $8 trillion to the deficit, which the Americans will have to pay.
“You’re going to be paying for it,” he said. “You’re going to lose some deductions, and you can’t buy the sales pitch. Nobody who’s looked at it that’s serious actually believes it adds up.”
Romney countered with a touting of his record in balancing budgets.
“Well, of course they add up,” Romney said. “I was someone who ran businesses for 25 years and balanced the budget. I ran the Olympics and balanced the budget. I ran the state of Massachusetts as a governor, to the extent any governor does, and balanced the budget all four years.”
Though the winner of the debate will itself be debated, GLSP senior Caroline Ballard gave the nod to the incumbent president.
“Obama brought it more this time. Romney just stated the problem in different words, but Obama gave his plans,” Ballard said.
A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, Oct. 17 print edition. Additional reporting by Kevin Burns. Tony Chau is city/state editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Weekend Roam: Little Germany
- WSN Editorial Board reflects on spring semester events
- Strawberry Festival promises delicious, intergalactic fun
- Clive Davis Institute collaborates with DJ Swivel
- Best places to dine on dumplings
- 'Heroes' is not super enough for Xbox Live film program launch
- NYU SLAM sees victory through 'badidas' campaign
- Victoria Ettore elected student council president
- Hester Street Fair hosts diverse vendors, delicious food