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Obama and governor Mitt Romney gearing up for the second presidential debate tonight.
Everybody's ordering pizza right after -- -- is lackluster performance and everybody talked about Democrats are hoping he steps it up brings back in a game and Republicans.
Are looking for governor Mitt Romney to build on his last debate performance.
So what can we expect tonight Jerry side as Wall Street Journal's Washington bureau chief and he joins us now Gerri good to see -- thanks for being here.
Thank you David on by the way I'm having Chinese rather how far Karen garrison that you and the clear gotta watch and that's that it yankees -- frankly I think people are gonna have -- have two boxes under review what -- -- art I'm not saying the last that hey that's.
I think it's fair to say was mostly about specifics people can argue about who was right in the specifics but it was it was very heavy on the specifics this time it's gonna be sort of on.
General themes is that not the theme of what -- Romney presidency would be like a what a second term would be like under -- -- Well I think that's right that's tends to be what you get out of town hall format -- remember that's what this is going to be tonight this is not going to be a moderator posing questions is is going to be.
-- an audience of eighty some average voters posing questions and they tend to want to know.
Vision you know what you gonna do over the next four years they're not -- they don't tend to be so interest in re litigating what happened over the last four or eight or twelve years.
Which is the way those of us in the press and the candidates like to approach things sometime they want to know what you gonna do for me in the next four years.
And so I think it probably going to be a different feel.
It probably is not a good environment for President Obama to try to do a lot of Democrats want him to do which is to find a way to be tougher on Mitt Romney -- you know voters in these town halls don't want you be talking to the other -- they want to be talking to them.
It's it's pretty incredible though when you look at hard to believe any poll because they do show.
A lot of differentials but one thing's for sure is it's very close which means that neither candidate is truly invigorating that and the and the big overall voting public is that true of me -- affairs.
No that's right you know -- I spent some time today looking over -- aggregated polling data what you see the picture that comes out is to candidates -- been a very good job.
At job number one for each of them which is to solidify their base the bases are very locked in they're very they're very excited about this but people in the middle -- less so.
And they're still floating around there aren't a whole lot of evidence so one of the interest -- things tonight.
Is how do you reach those people who aren't locked in benefit neither of these guys has to worry I think that much about solidifying the base they're there they're doing what they're supposed to do.
Young voters for example -- certain to come home finally for President Obama evangelicals have already come home for Mitt Romney.
What about those people in the middle and what's the message them and can you get them excited about the election.
-- Jerry you know we Saturn is not going to be about specifics there are a couple of specifics I think that we are gonna hear about and one in fact I gotta I gotta mailing of mass -- from Stephanie Cutter with the Obama campaign.
And she's again focusing on this so called five trillion dollar figure the cost of the Romney plan.
Which not only Romney repudiate its but now some of the people that prison Obama cited.
As as as sources for the five trillion dollars saying that that figure's been -- report are we likely -- re visitation of that.
You know I I gotta go back your first question David yes but I think with probably less specificity I think the point here would be for President Obama does not not to try to -- -- the math because there's going to be dispute over that.
But to try to.
Convey the message he's trying to use that five trillion dollar figure to say which is you can't do all the things governor Romney is promising.
You can't raise the -- you can't cut taxes and you can't reduce the deficit.
-- -- up I think that's about as far in terms of detail -- -- wanna go tonight.
It ought to lead to another from the president's point of view I think probably ought to lead to a broader conversation -- here's what I would do instead here's my vision and here's how my economic philosophy creates jobs and growth I think that was an element that was somewhat missing from the first -- twenty seconds left will we hear the 47%.
Number or will we hear the president bring that up.
I think you probably well I mean clearly there was regret in the Obama camp that he didn't in the first debate again -- it's hard to bring it up.
In the context of talking to regular voters -- -- bring that up.
Accusing governor Romney if something but I think you'll hear the figure 47% yes it was easier to bring up -- Vice President Biden was there thing.
Yes let's -- -- -- thanks Gerri good to see you.
Thanks Jerry side who will definitely be watching the debate -- not any baseball game.