Watch Monday’s final debate which focuses exclusively on Foreign Policy issues, and should be of most interest to those outside the US at the link below. You can watch livestream, or come back when it suits you for a recorded version.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/...y.html?hpid=z2From Europe to China to the Middle East, perceptions of the contest have lagged behind indications that the two men are in a virtual dead heat. Obama remains widely popular abroad, and there are signs that many leaders are unprepared for a Romney presidency.
In Western Europe, few people can imagine Romney in office. In China, officials have been focused on the intrigues of their impending leadership transition, though many worry that both American candidates have been beating up on their country instead of pummeling each other.
In Europe, leaders have good reason to avoid the issue: From the Scottish Highlands to the heel of Italy, it’s Obama country all the way. One survey last month from the German Marshall Fund found Europeans breaking 75 percent for Obama and 8 percent for Romney. Even conservative leaders have maneuvered themselves to appear closer to the U.S. president, reasoning that they can get their own electoral bump from doing so, although popular enthusiasm for Obama has diminished after a public frenzy in 2008.
The 90-minute forum at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla., is expected to focus mainly on foreign policy. Moderator Bob Schieffer of CBS News has selected the following topics, subject to change for news developments:
America's role in the world
Our longest war - Afghanistan and Pakistan
Red Lines - Israel and Iran
The Changing Middle East and the New Face of Terrorism - I
The Changing Middle East and the New Face of Terrorism - II
The Rise of China and Tomorrow's World
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...rc=nl_politicsInside the NBC-WSJ poll, however, there are all sorts of fascinating findings about the electorate and what people think of the choice before them in 15 days time. We broke out 8 of the data points we were most struck by below. You can peruse the entire poll yourself here. (And stay tuned for a look at what the NBC-WSJ poll tells us about Romney’s alleged woman problem later today in this space.)
Debate Preview: Looking Tough, but Not Too Tough, on Foreign Policy
By Steven T. Dennis and Jonathan Broder
President Barack Obama and GOP challenger Mitt Romney face off for the last time in tonight’s foreign policy debate with starkly different challenges as they near the end of their fight to be the next commander in chief. Full Story
Third Presidential Debate: Last Best Chance to Show Vision, Likability, Command
Mitt Romney won the first 2012 presidential debate decisively, while President Obama rebounded two weeks later with a narrow victory. That leaves Monday’s third and final faceoff — one ostensibly set to focus on foreign policy — as the tiebreaker. And in a razor-tight race, the winner could very well go on to claim the White House, report National Journal's Naureen Khan and Alex Roarty.
New Poll Shows Presidential Race Still Deadlocked
The race between President Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney is deadlocked among likely voters in the Nov. 6 general election, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Sunday.
Analysis: In a Campaign About the Economy, Foreign Policy May Get the Last Word
It’s no secret that the economy has been the primary topic in the presidential race, but in the home-stretch of a dead-heat match, both campaigns are spending an increasing amount of time debating foreign policy, writes National Journal's Alex Roarty.
Gallup Editor Defends Polls
Under fire that his organization’s poll leans disproportionately Republican, Gallup Editor-in-Chief Frank Newport told Fox News Sunday that his group’s polling methodology is “extremely solid.”
The Hill: Obama faces long odds to close Gitmo if he tries again
By Jeremy Herb
President Obama may still harbor ambitions to close Guantanamo Bay, but he faces a difficult path if he wins reelection and decides to pursue the goal in a second term.
The Hill: Campaigns spar over ‘Romnesia’ charge By Megan R. Wilson Obama deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter on Sunday defended the president’s charge that GOP challenger Mitt Romney is hiding his true positions to win centrist voters.
The Hill: Gallup poll: Romney lead back up to 7 points By Jonathan Easley Mitt Romney is back up by 7 points over President Obama, according to Gallup’s daily tracking survey released Sunday.
THIRD DEBATE: LAST BIG CHANCE. Mitt Romney won the first 2012 presidential debate decisively, while President Obama rebounded two weeks later with a narrow victory. That leaves Monday’s third and final faceoff — one set to focus on foreign policy issues — as the tiebreaker. And in a razor-tight race, the winner could very well go on to claim the White House.
BOTH SIDES SPINNING AHEAD OF DEBATE. Both the Obama and Romney campaigns deployed surrogates on the morning talk shows today in an effort to set expectations and preview lines of argument for tonight’s debate. The Romney campaign emphasized diplomacy to curtail Iran's nuclear program, shying away from more hawkish rhetoric. Meanwhile, the Obama campaign released an ad focused on Iraq and Afghanistan that concludes with this narration: “It’s time to stop fighting over there, and start rebuilding here.” Read more
IS OBAMA’S FOREIGN POLICY EDGE FADING? It would seem that between Romney’s flubs and the president’s strengths, President Obama is well positioned heading into Monday’s debate on foreign policy, as National Journal's Beth Reinhard writes. But a recent poll by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found Obama’s overall advantage in the arena fading—possibly because of persistent questions about his handling of the Libya attack. Asked which candidate can do a better job in making foreign-policy decisions, Americans favored Obama over Romney by only 4 percentage points, compared with a 15-point gap in September. Read more
EARLY VOTING IN NEVADA FAVORS OBAMA. After two days of early voting in Nevada, Democrats boast that figures released by county elections officials show they hold a significant lead. About 53 percent of the voters who turned out on Saturday and Sunday in Clark County, the state's most populous, were Democrats, while just 31 percent were Republicans, Hotline’s Reid Wilson reports. The 22-point disparity is higher than the 15 points by which Democrats outnumber Republicans—a sign, the party says, of the field organization Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Nevada Democrats have spent a decade building. Read more
ROMNEY TAKES 49-47 LEAD IN NEW POLITICO POLL-Across the 10 states identifed as competitive, Mitt leads 50-48. On the generic congressional ballot, Republicans now tie Democrats, 46-46, after trailing slightly over the last six weeks.
Women propel Romney's move into first place in the poll - a majority of which was conducted before the Hofstra debate. Obama's 11-point advantage a week ago dwindled to 6 points. The Democratic incumbent still leads 51 to 45 percent with women, but Romney leads by 10 points among men.
GOP intensity advantage persists: 72% of those who support Obama say they are "extremely likely" to vote, compared to 80% who back Romney. Among those extremely likely to vote, Romney leads Obama by 7 points (52-45).
Both candidates go into the final debate on foreign policy with vulnerabilities. ”It sounded weeks ago like a mismatch. The final presidential debate would focus on foreign policy -- a sitting president who'd overseen the death of Osama bin Laden pitted against a one-term governor, so new to diplomatic thinking that he'd managed to offend a good chunk of Britain during a brief trip this summer. Monday night's debate doesn't look like a mismatch anymore…Before the two men first debated on Oct. 3, Obama held a 15-point lead over Romney on the question of who is more capable of managing foreign affairs. After Obama's listless performance, a Pew Research Center poll found that the gap had narrowed to a slender four points…In this debate, Obama could face the opposite of the situation many envisioned weeks before. Instead of lending him credibility, his commander-in-chief role could make him more vulnerable, opening Obama to questions about a range of unresolved crises.” Anne Gearan and David A. Fahrenthold in The Washington Post.
RICHARD N. HAASS, president of the Council on Foreign Relations (his next book, "Foreign Policy Begins at Home: The Case for Putting America's House in Order," will be published in spring by Basic Books), writing on POLITICO, "Why a foreign policy debate is an anachronism ": "Categorizing some issues as 'foreign' and others as 'domestic' bears little relationship to a world in which what happens out there affects conditions here and vice versa. This is the inescapable reality of globalization, the defining characteristic of the 21st century world. In fact, some issues are by their very nature both foreign and domestic. Immigration is one, as is energy policy, climate change, drugs, trade and finance.
BATTLEGROUND BRIEFING-THE PATH TO 270:
THEORIES OF THE CASE - MOMENTUM VERSUS THE MAP: "Obama's campaign is embracing a fundamentally defensive strategy centered on winning Ohio at all costs - while unleashing a new barrage of blistering attacks against Romney aimed at mobilizing a less-than-fired-up Democratic base," Glenn Thrush and Jonathan Martin report. "A surging Romney is suddenly playing offense all over the map, and the upward movement since the Denver debate gives him the luxury of striking what his advisers - and more than a few Democrats - think is a more positive, presidential, 'Morning in America' tone. In contrast to the grind-it-out Obama strategy, Romneyland's working theory is that the momentum shift since Denver is a late-breaking, decisive wave that gives them the chance to not just win but win big...Both campaigns are confident they can win."
MORE - CHICAGO MINDMELD: "The Obama team knows full well North Carolina is slipping away...If Romney officials are increasingly confident about Florida and Virginia, they are more bullish on Iowa than Wisconsin - which has emerged as a must-win if Obama holds on in Ohio. And they are more optimistic about Colorado than Nevada, which Obama aides now flat-out predict will be an Obama win. Romney isn't abandoning Nevada yet, though, and will visit the state this week on a western trek." http://goo.gl/8Z2Da
ROMNEY HAS SLIGHT EDGE IN FLORIDA: "Florida Republicans are feeling increasingly optimistic that Romney will carry the biggest of swing-state prizes and for good reason - he's narrowly leading in most every poll here and Obama is under 50 percent in the same surveys," Jonathan Martin writes. "The rising confidence on the right owes to three major factors: http://goo.gl/0bG06
BOTH CAMPAIGNS PRIVATELY AGREE OBAMA HAS NARROW EDGE IN MIDWEST: Iowa, Wisconsin and, most importantly, Ohio. "A Midwest swing-state sweep makes it almost impossible to chart a Romney win," Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei note. "At the same time, Romney is doing better than ever in Florida, is a slight favorite in Colorado and is back to near-even in Virginia."
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE took on the town hall debate: http://bit.ly/T6dRxu
MITT did the coin toss for a flag football game between his staff and some reporters. Both he and Obama also recorded video messages praising RG3 that aired on Fox before the Redskins-Giants game: http://goo.gl/0Ohz9.
AN OHIO COUNTY ELECTIONS DIRECTOR resigned because the stress of running the election in a swing state was too much for him: http://bit.ly/RVDg1b
THE VIRGINIAN-PILOT has a fun list of 18 quotes in today's paper. They are from Obama, Romney, and Mr. Burns on The Simpsons. You have to guess who said them: http://goo.gl/X5JQU.
KELLY CLARKSON is leaning toward Obama: http://goo.gl/RLk6J.
ANN talked with some supporters about how she copes with MS on the road. "If I'm home, I juice," she said. "You can't really juice on the road. Anyone got a blender?" http://goo.gl/4NHpy
MITTISMS are anachronistic words that Romney says. The New York Times on his throwback language: http://goo.gl/IE9iW.
CODA - QUOTE OF THE DAY: "After I lost my race for president, I went to see George. I said, 'Tell me how long it takes to get over a defeat of this kind.' He said, 'I'll call you when it happens.'" - Walter Mondale reacts Sunday to the death of George McGovern http://goo.gl/dXNgt