Boca Raton, Florida: On Monday, the warring candidates sat down for their third and final debate. Both knew what was at stake here. Obama was facing a resurgent Romney, whose numbers in the polls are on the rise. Experts expect him to top off at 53%, which is exactly the percentage of Americans Romney doesn’t think are lazy.
Romney started off with a startling admission, claiming that the US could not kill its way out of the crisis in the Middle East. The statement not only flew in the face of a long tradition of American diplomacy, but also seemed to go against his ideas about expanding the military. Romney’s advisors later clarified the statement, saying that what the governor meant is we can’t kill our way out of the crisis yet. Romney has faith in the potential of America and its vast stores of missiles.
But Obama, who has shown an unwavering belief in the use of machine guns solve international conflict, wasn’t letting Romney off easy. He brought up an incident where Romney cited Russia as the biggest foreign security threat. Obama struck hard, saying “The 1980s called, they want their foreign policy back.” He added, “And their political stances. And their haircut.” He then smacked the table and said, “Boom!”
With that, the foreign policy debate came to an end. Of course, the whole hour and a half was supposed to be about foreign policy, but it’s a difficult topic for both candidates. Obama supports a tough stance on Iran while Romney supports an even tougher stance on Iran. Obama wants to strengthen our ties with Israel while Romney wants to strengthen our ties with Israel more. They couldn’t really continue with that tack long before people began to wonder how different the candidates were. And then having a two-party system would just seem silly.
Another highlight came later in the debate, when Romney made the point that the US has less ships than they did in 1916. Obama seized on this, saying “We also have fewer horses and bayonets,” and went on to explain to the governor what an aircraft carrier was. Romney listened attentively and took notes as he had throughout the debate, where he seemed to be learning a great deal about foreign policy.
However, Obama misunderstood Romney’s position. His campaign regrets the loss of bayonets and cavalry. They go a step further in their “Steps Toward a More Heraldic America” statement, also known as the “Game of Presidents” plan. They insist on shifting back towards the 1400s, a time that embraced many conservative ideals. Back then, marriage was only between a man and a woman, abortion was nonexistent and Christians had the right to kill infidels without first having to go through Congress.
As the debate came to a close, Romney proved his devotion to the old ways by demanding debate by combat. He pulled his sword from its scabbard, the steel rippling as he dove at Obama. Obama raised his shield just in time, the wood around the red “O” on a white field splintering with the force.
As they charged one another for a final time, they each called out a battle cry. “Hope and change” and “Believe in America” rang off the rafters as their steel rang together.