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Republican Presidential Debate Targets Obama

By: CNN -- Samantha Hayes Email
By: CNN -- Samantha Hayes Email

6-14 -

The 2012 presidential election is still more than a year away but already the likely field of Republican primary contenders are fired up and ready for a fight.

They squared off last night (6-13) in Manchester, New Hampshire.

From the economy to foreign policy, seven republicans with their eyes on the White House got a chance to debate the issues in the nation's first primary debate.

Each candidate came with a different agenda.

For some, it was about getting their name out.

"I will be a president to do what's right, not what's politically right." - Herman Cain

"The message around the country from business leaders large and small, including manufacturers, is 'get the president off my back'. As President, I will." - Tim Pawlenty

Each participant tried to differentiate him or herself from the growing field...All taking aim at the President.

Rick Santorum says:

"He has turned his back on American allies and he has embraced our enemies."

Rep. Ron Paul:

"We should think about protecting our borders rather than the borders of Iraq and Afghanistan."

Newt Gingrich:

"It's not about what one person in America does. It's about what the American people do."

Mitt Romney, front-runner in the latest CNN/ Opinion Research Poll, defended his stance on health care, saying he would repeal Obama care.

He is often criticized for the law he signed as Massachusetts governor that became a model for national health care.

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann used her podium to announce she's filed the paperwork to make her run official.

"I want to announce tonight, President Obama is a one-term President."

While their politics may differ, that's one point these seven
Republicans agree on.

Mitt Romney says:

"Anyone on this stage would be a better president than President Obama."

Another topic of agreement among the seven candidates is the economy and how that issue will be the driving force in the 2012 presidential election.


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