DENVER (WKOW) -- The economy and health care dominated the first presidential debate pitting President Barack Obama against Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
On the topic of the economy, the president pointed to progress made in saving Detroit's auto industry and rebuilding the housing market. Romney said he would take a different path that gets government out of the way for American businesses.
Obama said Romney's plan would cut taxes for high-income workers. Romney said that's incorrect and that wealthy Americans will do just fine regardless whether he or Obama is in the White House.
When it comes to health care, the former governor of Massachusetts vowed to repeal Obama's health care law, saying it adds costs to the health system and has led to Medicare cuts.
Romney said Obama spent his energy pushing through a massive health care law rather than trying to fix the struggling economy.
Romney said it's expensive and expensive things hurt families.
Obama said his administration worked on the health care law at the same time he was working to create jobs. He said the law has helped people with pre-existing conditions and those who have children under age 26.
The president countered that he based the law on Romney's own plan when he was governor.
Obama said, quote, "We've seen this model work really well -- in Massachusetts."
The two candidates also disagreed on Wall Street reform.
Romney softened his usual anti-regulatory rhetoric, saying government rules are essential in a free economy. But he said the Dodd-Frank law that targeted the financial industry in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis was a mistake.
Romney said the law has "unintended consequences" because it allows banks to grow to the point that they are too big to fail. He said the law's mortgage requirements don't help homeowners.
Obama asked whether anyone thinks the financial crisis occurred because of too much oversight and Wall Street regulation. He said anyone who thinks that was the cause should vote for Romney.
The two candidates will meet for two more debates. The next one is Tuesday, October 16, when they'll tackle both foreign and domestic policy.
DENVER (WKOW) -- After weeks and months of preparation, President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will square off in the first presidential debate.
Organizers in Denver, Colorado are putting the final touches on the debate stage. The first showdown will focus on domestic issues with heavy emphasis on the economy.
This is not the first time the two candidates have met, but it's close. President Obama has met Romney only three other times according to Obama campaign records.
The debate starts at 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday. It will air on WKOW-TV.
Stay tuned to 27 News and WKOW.com for full coverage on the debate.
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