President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney have been preparing extensively for tomorrow night's debate in Denver, Colorado, yet their spokespeople aim to lower expectations for the event.
This debate, the first of three, will focus on domestic policy, with a heavy emphasis on the economy.
Romney says it's not about who comes out on top: "In my view, it's not so much about winning and losing or even the people themselves, the president and myself, it's about something bigger than that. These debates are an opportunity for us to describe the pathway forward for America that we would choose." And while Obama is confident, he's not underestimating the competition. "Governor Romney is a good debater. I'm just okay," he said.
Romney may have the advantage. During the GOP primaries, he participated in several debates. This time around, his campaign team has been preparing him for a one-on-one face-off. He's been getting used to the cadence of carrying questions back and forth, how the single moderator is going to be controlling the debate between 2 candidates.
Obama has not debated since his 2008 campaign. Senator John Kerry has been helping the incumbent prepare, when the jam-packed presidential schedule will allow for it. "The president has a day job. The president is the president and has not had the time to practice. All we hear about is Mitt Romney is practicing, practicing, practicing everywhere he goes."
As if the candidates were not under enough pressure heading into wednesday night, the latest CNN-ORC poll shows that, considering the margin of error, the race is a tie.