HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (AP/WGGB) — President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney offered their jobs agenda at the start of the second presidential debate, responding to a college student concerned about finding a job after graduation.
Romney told the student that his question was one that’s being asked by college student across the nation. He said his administration would try to make it easier for students to afford college and promote economic growth to help students.
Romney says the nation faces more debt and fewer jobs. He says, quote, “I’m going to change that.”
Obama says he would build upon the 5 million private sector jobs created during his first term, pushing for more manufacturing jobs. The president said his policies aimed to improve the education system and promote a variety of energy sources.
As the debate continues, Obama and Romney try to appeal to female voters.
Responding to a question about pay equity for women, Obama notes that the first piece of legislation he signed made it easier for women to seek the same pay as men for doing the same work.
Romney says that as governor of Massachusetts, his administration had a number of women in senior leadership positions. He says many women have suffered job losses and moved into poverty during Obama’s tenure and that creating more jobs would help women.
The president questioned Romney’s commitment to women’s health care, pointing to the Republican’s vow to eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood. He calls health care a “pocket book issue” for women and families.
During the debate Romney says he differs from fellow Republican George W. Bush on energy policy, China and deficits. President Barack Obama says the biggest difference is that his GOP rival is more extreme on social issues than Bush.
A voter asked Romney how he was different than Bush, who left office deeply unpopular. Romney says that he would govern under different conditions that would allow him to make North America energy independent from Arab and Venezuelan oil. He also says he would crack down on China’s currency manipulation and cut the deficit by increasing trade.
Obama was ready with a quick retort. He says Romney, unlike Bush, would cut funding to Planned Parenthood and that Romney would pursue a more stringent immigration policy than Bush did.