The stage is set, the candidates are ready and the time is right. Today marks the second of the three 2012 presidential debates. Held at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., the second presidential debate starts at 9PM ET, so be sure to tune in. Debate No. 2 will differ from the first presidential debate, as Governor Romney and President Obama will be participating in a town hall-style debate, where independent citizens likely to vote will be asking the questions. Given the different format and the results of the first presidential debate, we can expect to see a few key differences in tonight’s showdown.
- Connecting with people. Both candidates will be facing their potential voters face to face, so it’s do or die when it comes to making a ‘personal’ connection. This will likely be the decisive factor in who is declared tonight’s winner.
- Getting women into the conversation. With domestic issues regarding contraception, abortion and other hot topics always being discussed, expect to hear questions regarding the two candidates policies as they relate to female voters. While Obama has traditionally led with female voters, a recent Gallup poll showed that Romney cut that lead significantly after the first debate.
- Strong performances on both sides. Romney won the first debate and nearly everyone, including Obama, acknowledges that. Since the last debate, both candidates have been prepping for tonight. Expect to see Romney continuing with the same strengths of the last debate and Obama tiptoeing the line between the coolness of his first performance and Biden’s over the top spectacle during his debate with VP candidate Paul Ryan.
- Benghazi. Although Hillary Clinton has publicly taken the blame for the attacks in Libya that resulted in the death of four Americans this past September 11, those posing the questions are likely to bring up the topic that has caused a major problem for the White House.
- Emphasis on domestic policies. Tonight’s debates are meant to focus on the economy and other stateside priorities, while the final debate is intended to look towards foreign affairs. Watch for questions on gun control, affirmative action, states rights and other divisive domestic policies.