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Article updated: 10/3/2012 4:15 PM

It's show time: Obama, Romney meet in first debate

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In these Sept. 27 file photos Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, left, arrives to campaign in Springfield, Va., and President Barack Obama arrives back at the White House after campaigning in Virginia Beach, Va. Fierce and determined competitors, Obama and Romney each have a specific mission for the string of three debates that starts Wednesday night, Oct. 3, 2012. Obama, no longer the fresh face of 2008, must convince skeptical Americans that he can do in a second term what he couldn't in his first: restore the U.S. economy to full health. Romney, anxious to keep the race from slipping away, needs to instill confidence that he is a credible and trusted alternative to the president, with a better plan for strengthening the fragile economy.

Associated Press

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Primed for a showdown, President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney left their practice sessions behind Wednesday for a prime-time debate before millions with the power to settle the race for the White House in tough economic times. The encounter at the University of Denver was the first of three for the candidates. By agreement between the rival campaigns, it was focused on the economy and other domestic issues.
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