US presidential debate

2012-10-17 13:35
(File, AP)

(File, AP)

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Hempstead - US President Barack Obama and his White House challenger Mitt Romney clashed on Tuesday in their second of three head-to-head debates in the run-up to the 6 November presidential election.

Here are some key quotes from their debate:

Slippery road to Greece

Romney: "We've gone from $10 trillion of national debt to $16 trillion of national debt. If the president were re-elected, we'd go to almost $20 trillion of national debt. This puts us on a road to Greece."

Not ready for command

Obama: "While we were still dealing with our diplomats being threatened, Governor Romney put out a press release, trying to make political points, and that's not how a commander-in-chief operates.

"The suggestion that anybody on my team, whether it's a secretary of state, our UN ambassador, anybody on my team, would play politics or mislead when we've lost four of our own, governor, is offensive."

The great unravelling

Romney: "The president's policies throughout the Middle East began with an apology tour, and he pursued a strategy of leading from behind, and this strategy is unravelling before our very eyes."

Mr President, can I have a job?


Romney: "When you come out in 2014, I presume I'm going to be president. I'm going to make sure you get a job. Thanks Jeremy. Yeah, you bet."

Obama: "Jeremy, first of all, your future is bright."

Open door policy

Romney: "This is a nation of immigrants. We welcome people coming to this country as immigrants. My dad was born in Mexico of American parents; Ann's dad was born in Wales and is a first-generation American."

Obama: "We are a nation of immigrants. I mean we're just a few miles away from Ellis Island. We all understand what this country has become because talent from all around the world wants to come here."

Pensioning him off

Romney: "Have you looked at your pension?"

Obama: "I don't look at my pension. It's not as big as yours. I don't check it that often. Give me advice. You also have investments in Chinese companies and investments outside of the United States, through a Cayman trust."

He said what? When?

Romney: "I want to make sure we get that for the record. It took the president 14 days before he called it an act of terror."

Obama: "Get the transcript."

Moderator Candy Crowley: "He did, in fact, call it an act of terror."

Obama: "Could you say that a little louder, Candy?"

That's not me


Obama: "A lot of this campaign has been devoted to this notion that I think government creates jobs. That's not what I believe. I believe the free enterprise system is the greatest engine of prosperity the world has ever known."

Romney: "The president's campaign tried to characterise me as someone that is very different than who I am. I care about 100 percent of the American people. I care about our kids."

Enter the Dragon

Romney: "China's been a currency manipulator for years and years, and the president has a regular opportunity to label them as a currency manipulator, but refuses to do so. Day one, I'll label China a currency manipulator."

Obama: "Governor, you're the last person who's going to get tough on China.

"Keep in mind that Governor Romney invested in companies that were pioneers of outsourcing to China, and is currently investing in companies that are building surveillance equipment for China to spy on its own folks."

Binders full of women

Romney: "All the applicants seemed to be men. I said why are all the applicants men? Well, they said, 'These are the people that are qualified.' I said, why can't we find some women that are qualified?"

"I went to a number of women's groups and said, 'Can you help us find folks,' and they brought us whole binders full of women."

Read more on:    barack obama  |  mitt romney  |  us  |  us elections 2012

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