President Barack Obama aggressively challenged Republican candidate Mitt Romney on jobs, energy and Libya in their second debate on Tuesday as the Democrat tried reclaim the momentum in a tight White House race.
Obama was much sharper and more energetic than in their first debate two weeks ago, when his listless performance was heavily criticized and gave Romney’s campaign a much-needed boost.
The incumbent fought back against Romney’s accusations that he had played down the attack by Islamist militants in Libya last month that killed four Americans, including the U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens.
“I’m the president and I’m always responsible,” Obama said.
The two men argued over whether the White House had described the Benghazi attack as terrorism or not, with Obama saying he had in fact called it an act of terror when he spoke in the Rose Garden the following day.
LIVE COVERAGE: The second 2012 U.S. presidential debate
Photo: The stage is set for the second U.S. presidential campaign debate taking place in Hempstead, New York, October 16, 2012. U.S. president Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will meet in a town-hall format taking questions from a selected audience on Tuesday night. [REUTERS/Lucas Jackson]
David Blaine has safely unplugged.
The thrill-seeking magician came down Monday evening from the 20-foot-high (6-meter) perch on a New York pier where he spent the past 72 hours standing inside an artificial lightning storm generated by seven high-voltage, low-current Tesla coils.
The 39-year-old performer said the electrifying performance would be his last endurance stunt.
Blaine spent the final minutes grinning and waving at a crowd of about 150 onlookers and pretending to conduct the thunderously loud renditions of keyboard works by Bach, Liszt and Mozart that provided the musical accompaniment to the stunt.
He and his colleagues spent several minutes slowly unhooking his harness before he descended to the ground, where he leaned on two men to support him as his wife jogged up to kiss him.