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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

In Boca Raton, an aggressive final debate for Barack Obama, Mitt Romney



President Barack Obama persistently attacked Mitt Romney as naive on foreign affairs in their final debate Monday night while Romney tried to pull off a balancing act, projecting a more moderate outlook while asserting the nation's standing in the world had slipped under his rival.

"Nowhere in the world is America's influence greater today than it was four years ago," Romney said.

The Republican nominee got pleasantries out of the way by immediately congratulating Obama for "taking out Osama bin Laden," while suggesting danger still lurked and portraying himself as less hawkish than past Republican candidates.

"We can't kill our way out of this mess," Romney said of unrest in the Middle East, calling for a "comprehensive and robust strategy to help the world of Islam and other parts of the world, reject this radical violent extremism, which is certainly not on the run."

An assertive and confident Obama tried to cast Romney as a shape shifter, saying his positions were "all over the map."

"Every time you've offered an opinion you've been wrong," Obama said. (full story here)

[Last modified: Tuesday, October 23, 2012 12:18am]


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