61
      Sunday
      82 / 59
      Monday
      85 / 61
      Tuesday
      86 / 63

      High stakes in Tuesday's presidential debate

      Both Governor Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama have arrived in New York ahead of Tuesday's crucial debate.

      Following the first presidential debate nearly two weeks ago, the Republican and Democratic challengers are neck and neck according to Tuesday's daily Gallup tracking poll.

      "Pressure is on Obama, he has to perform," said Dr. Steven Nelson, a professor of political science at Northern Michigan University. "The first debate, almost everyone thought Romney did a better job."

      Obama supporters in Marquette are eager for a comeback, after the president's widely considered lackluster performance.

      "I want to see the president really come forward, and when Romney says these things that are wrong, I want him to, instead of being as philosophical as he's been, I'd like him to be a little more aggressive," said Kathy Davis, an Obama supporter and volunteer at the Marquette County Democrats.

      However, Tuesday's matchup is a town hall format, where American voters will directly ask the candidates their positions on both foreign and domestic issues.

      "At the same time many people think Obama needs a chance to go after Romney and does it lend itself to that? It's a different format," Nelson explained. "He may not get a chance to go directly at Romney. He may have to mediate through without looking too much like a bully."

      The town hall format is a high-risk, high-reward for Romney, too, as the Republican has traditionally struggled with the relatability factor.

      "I think that is one of the things Romney has been trying to work with, too, is trying to be a little bit warmer, more likeable and a little bit more identifiable," Nelson said. "He'll have his chance; can he relate to these regular people asking questions."

      Romney supporters here in Marquette hope their candidate can build on the momentum from the Republican's strong performance two weeks ago.

      "I want to see a fair debate, with a fair moderator and let the chips fall where they may, and that will be great," said Brendan Biolo.