With the party conventions concluded and less than two months remaining until election day, President Obama and Mitt Romney are turning their attention towards the upcoming debate, the first of three.
The debate, scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 3, will likely include some harsh criticisms between the two candidates, as it is their first meeting and their first opportunity to counter each other’s rhetoric one-on-one.

It is likely that President Obama will focus his criticisms on Mitt Romney’s recent gaffes pertaining to his comments about foreign policy in regards to the protests in the Middle East as well as Americans who are exempt from income taxes. Countering that, Romney will likely make the economy the focus of his points against the president.

This debate, unlike ones scheduled for later in October, will have no focus point, but will instead cover a broad variety of topics. The subjects of the economy, foreign policy, health care, and education will likely be the most examined and questioned, however other topics are expected to find their way into the discussion.

Jake Horowitz, a political writer and co-founder of policymic.com, predicts that Romney may have an edge entering the first debate due to his recent series of 20 debates in the Republican Primaries, suggesting that President Obama may be a bit out of practice. Horowitz notes, however, that the president is equally likely to shake off the cobwebs and quickly get into the debate state of mind that was lauded for in the 2008 election.
The debates will likely be a critical time for the Romney campaign, offering them a chance to bounce back from a recent decline in the polls. After his most recent gaffes, a Gallup tracking poll has him listed as far as six percentage points behind President Obama and predicts that swing states, such as Pennsylvania and Ohio, are currently leaning in the president’s favor.

The Presidential debates are scheduled for Oct.3 in Denver, Colo., Oct.16, in Hempstead, N.Y., and Oct. 22, in Boca Raton, Fla., the last of which will focus primarily on foreign policy. The Vice Presidential debate will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 11 in Danville, Ky.

By: A.J. Simmons


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