Exactly two weeks after the first presidential debate
that enabled Republican candidate Mitt Romney
to close the gap with President Barack Obama,
the two will battle it out in the second of three debates on Tuesday.
The New York debate which will focus both on foreign and domestic policy will be held exactly three weeks before Americans cast their ballots. The losing candidate will have very little time to fix the damage.
The two candidates have spent the past few days intensely preparing for the debate, Obama in Williamsburg, Virginia and Romney in Massachusetts. Romney wife's Ann recently told a Philadelphia radio station that her husband is enjoying tremendous momentum.
A Reuters/Ipsos poll showed that Obama remained ahead on some core issues such as healthcare and has a small advantage in the swing states. Early voting has already commenced in 43 of the 50 states. The race will be closest in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and Nevada.
Obama with supporters (Photo: AP)
On Monday, the Obama campaign released news ads focusing on the economy – the single most crucial issue in the elections. The president tried to highlight the drop in unemployment which recently reached its lowest point since the beginning of his term.
Romney's advisors, on the other hand, hinted that the Republican candidate will continue to soften his message, as he did in the Denver debate.
Romney has recently been seen promising that his tax plan will not benefit the rich and highlighted his work to curb anti-abortion laws as the governor of Massachusetts. Romney said he will not promote anti-abortion legislation if elected.
Romney. Needs to maintain momentum (Photo: AFP)
Tuesday's debate at the Hofstra University in Long Island will be moderated by CNN's Candy Crowley but the candidates will also be asked to answer some questions by US citizens. The candidates will have two minutes to answer those questions and Crowley will be able to follow-up.
Israel is likely to be one of the issues the candidates will be asked to comment on, together with other foreign policy issues such as the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, the Syrian civil war
and the Iranian nuclear issue.
The third and final debate which will be held in Boca Raton, Florida next week will be solely devoted to foreign policy.