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Until November 6, there is no escaping election madness and no safe thing to say. But any savvy career woman always knows to bring her binder to a meeting and come prepared. So read our guide for all you need to know, why you need to know it, and REPEAT AFTER ME: It’s almost over.
Obama showed up for his first debate last night. Romney had his second. There were interruptions, challenges, and stare downs. Basically, sh*t got real. These two really don't like each other.
What Were the Details Again?
Long Island, NY. Hofstra University. Town hall format. CNN's Candy Crowley moderated. More than 80 undecided voters were brought together, giving a few lucky ones the chance to put the candidates on the spot and watch 'em dance.
Why Did They Make Us Cringe?
They circled and sized each other up. We haven't felt that tense since 8 Mile. While one talked, the other sat in view with glares that rival the soap opera “slow-turn.” You could taste how badly Barry wanted to drop his mic at the end.
So Barack Brought It?
Guess who got his swagger back? Whatever POTUS took before the debate—Coca Cola, Red Bull, an upper cocktail—it worked. After his sleepy performance at the first debate, he really needed to act like a president this time, and by the end, he did. He portrayed Mittens as an advocate for the wealthy who flips before he flops. The Dems got drunk off of happiness and dreamed of inaugural balls.
Was Mittens Prepared?
Yes—his eyebrows told us so. Romney, fresh off of his first debate high, used his momentum to be even more aggressive. Maybe too aggressive? At one point the audience gasped at Romney's fiery retort to the president trying to interject and even got all up in Obama's space. He criticized Obama by saying he's a great speaker with a poor record that the U.S. cannot afford. Ouch. Mittacular knew his debate rules and fastidiously pointed out his owed 30 seconds. Often.
Did Romney Put His Foot in His Mouth?
Romney made clear that he cares about 100% of Americans, which is awkward, because he recently said he was not such a fan of 47% of the population who see themselves as victims. Foot-in-mouth because Obama hadn't brought it up yet. Silly Mitt, don't feed the beast.
Where Did the Sparks Fly?
Do not ask a candidate about his pension. The only thing that would have made Libya a hotter topic would be if the candidates could see it from their houses. President Obama reminded us all that nobody puts Hilz in a corner, the day after she claimed responsibility for the recent attacks in Libya. Obama said, "I'm the president, and I'm always responsible." Romney accused Team Obama of politicizing the deaths of those killed. Obama stared him down and said he greeted the caskets with family members and that claim is "offensive."
Was Candy Too Sweet?
Some conservatives say, heck yeah, we hired a moderator, not a fact checker. When Romney questioned when Obama labeled the Libyan attack an act of terror, Obama didn't need to respond because Crowley did. She corrected Mitt by saying that Obama did call the incident an "act of terror." Cue the soap-opera glare.
Why Are Binders in My Feed?
Mitt collected "binders full of women," not in an SVU sense or in a Match.com sense, but in a hiring sense, while he was governor of MA. Romney was just trying to say he supports women, but it came out as genuine as when your Dad congratulates you on becoming one. At least it brought us this Tumblr and made one person happy.
Did Pepto-Bismol Sponsor the Event?
Both Michelle Obama and Ann Romney wore pink, as in pretty in and pissed off in. Whose stylist got dismissed?
Are the Bushes Back?
Poor Dubya just wants to paint in peace. A questioner asked about the differences between Romney and Bush. Obama said easy, GWB didn't want to defund Planned Parenthood, or turn Medicare into a voucher program. Surprise! He was hinting at Romney.
OK—Where Did the Heat Come From?
As in, Romney promised audience member Jeremy a job when he graduates in 2014 (under a President Romney) and Obama emphasized making student loans more affordable, retraining workers for jobs available now, and making the wealthy pay for school.
As in, they both want to create them, just very differently. Obama thinks Romney only has a one-point plan that favors the rich, while he will rebuild industries and help small businesses. Romney says Obomb.com has no idea how to make new jobs, that everyone is unemployed, and that hopefully Barry will be, too.
Obama said the U.S. is all about producing more oil, gas, and coal and is investing in new sources of energy. Romney tells him he’s making it harder to drill, baby, drill! And taking away jobs!
As in, both candidates really wish they had answered these questions in Spanish. Obama says he is all for helping hard-working undocumented immigrants reach citizenship, while Romney has said they can self-deport themselves back home.
As in, Romney's Trapper-Keeper needs an update. Obama said he wants contraception to be free; Romney said you should be able to get all the access you want and then pay for it yourself.
As in, if you have a single parent or a gay parent, chances are you'll have less opportunities across the board, but more to own a gun, according to Romney. Obama says if a weapon was designed for a soldier, get it off my streets!
At this point, in talking about their stances, we may choose death. Obama: People making over $250K get a higher tax rate. Romney—the rich won't get tax cuts but the middle class will.
You Skimm'd it For Us
"As a future primary care physician, my career depends on this election. I've got a ton of student loans to pay." Lucy, Boston, MA
So What Happens Now?
We hope nobody has a case of the Mondays on Oct. 22. Final showdown. Last hurrah. The end.
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