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October 18, 2012

Obama, Romney trade jokes at NYC dinner

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney put aside the arguments and traded quips Thursday night at the Al Smith dinner in New York City, a traditional stop for presidential candidates.

Each spoke for about 10 minutes to the crowd at New York's Waldorf Astoria Hotel. Romney told the audience, "We're down to the final months of the president's term ... You have to wonder what [Obama is] thinking: So little time, so much to redistribute."

He noted how a campaign required a lot of wardrobe changes. Then he looked over the white tie and formal gown audience, and said, "it's nice to finally relax and wear what Ann and I wear around the house."

He looked at New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, saying he had one term as governor, a father who was governor, "and he thinks that could be enough to run for president." Like, uh, Mitt Romney.

Obama, he said, "already has a compelling new campaign slogan: You're better off now than you were four weeks ago."

Obama was next, and noted the election campaign had only a few days to go--"which begs the question, what are we doing here?"

The choice, he said, is "which one of us you want holding up traffic the next four years."

He previewed Monday's foreign policy debate: "Spoiler alert. We got bin Laden."

And he joked about the first debate--"I felt really well rested after the nice long nap I had during the first debate."


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The unofficial third debate. Romney wins in this way. He is likable, delivers jokes well and showed us a Presidential side. I think he stole this show and helped offset much of the negative ads running against him.

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"Planet Washington" covers politics and government. It is written by journalists in McClatchy's Washington Bureau.

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