From big oil to Big Bird: Quotes from the Obama-Romney debate

Agence France-Presse
Key quotes from the first of three televised presidential debates between US President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov Mitt Romney

Debate moderator Jim Lehrer (C) speaks to Democratic presidential candidate, U.S. President Barack Obama (R) and Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (L) during the Presidential Debate at the University of Denver on October 3, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. The first of four debates for the 2012 Election, three Presidential and one Vice Presidential, is moderated by PBS's Jim Lehrer and focuses on domestic issues: the economy, health care, and the role of government. Win McNamee/Getty Images/AFP

DENVER , Colorado, United States – US President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney faced off Wednesday, October 3 (Thursday, October 4) in the first of three televised debates in the run-up to the November 6 election.

Here are some of the key quotes of the night.

UNACCUSTOMED MODESTY

Obama: “You know, four years ago, I said that I’m not a perfect man, and I wouldn’t be a perfect president, and that’s probably a promise Governor Romney probably thinks I’ve kept.”

FEEL THE FEAR

Romney: “No question in my mind, if the president is re-elected you will see a middle class squeeze … You will see chronic unemployment — 43 straight months with unemployment above 8 percent.”

FLATTERY WILL GET YOU EVERYWHERE

Moderator: “We’ve barely got three minutes left. I’m not going to grade the two of you and say your answers have been too long or I’ve done a poor job.”

Obama: “You’ve done a great job, Jim.”

THE ZINGER

Romney: “Mr. President, you are entitled to your own airplane, your own house as president, but not to your own facts.”

CHURCH AND STATE

Romney: “That statement says we are endowed by our creator to pursue happiness as we choose … We are a nation that believes we’re children of the same God and we care for those with difficulties.”

SARCASM BITES

Obama: “He now says he’ll replace Obamacare and ensure all the good things in it will be in there … Is the reason that Governor Romney is keeping all these plans to replace secret because they are too good?”

MODERATING THE MODERATOR

Obama: “Now, the last point I would make, before …”

Moderator: “Two minutes is up, sir.”

Obama: “No, I think — I had five seconds before you interrupted me.”

AGAIN WITH THE SARCASM

Obama: “So the question is, does anybody out there think that the big problem we had is that there was too much oversight and regulation of Wall Street (prior to the 2008 financial crisis)? Because, if you do, then Governor Romney is your candidate.”

OBAMA FAMILY VALUES

Obama: “My grandmother died three days before I was elected president. She was fiercely independent. Only with a high school education, started as a secretary and ended up being vice president of a local bank.”

ROMNEY FAMILY VALUES

Romney: “Look, I have five boys, I’m used to people saying something that isn’t always true and keep on saying it hoping ultimately I will believe it. That is not the case.”

BIG OIL

Obama: “Now, does anybody think that ExxonMobil needs some extra money, when they are making money every time you go to the pump? Why wouldn’t we want to eliminate that? Why wouldn’t we eliminate tax cuts for corporate jets?”

THE PAIN IN SPAIN

Romney: “Spain spends 42 percent of their total economy on government. We’re now spending 42 percent of our economy on government. I don’t want to go down the path of Spain. I want to put more Americans to work.”

MORALITY TALE

Romney: “It’s frankly not moral for my generation to keep spending massively more than we take in, knowing burdens will be passed on to the next generation and paying interest and principal all their lives.”

BROKEN RECORD

Romney: “The president said he would cut the deficit in half. Unfortunately, he doubled it. Trillion dollar deficits for the last four years.”

WHAT’S HE HIDING?

Obama: “Well, for 18 months he’s been running on this tax plan, and now five weeks before the election, he says his big bold idea is ‘never mind’.”

THE TRUMP CARD

Obama: “We do have a difference when it comes to definitions of small businesses … Donald Trump is a small business. Donald Trump doesn’t like to think of himself as small anything.”

SACK THE MUPPET

Romney: “I’m sorry Jim. I’m gonna stop the subsidy to PBS. I’m gonna stop other things. I like PBS. I like Big Bird. I actually like you too.” (See video below) – Agence France-Presse

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