The first in the series of Presidential debates between President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney will air tonight from the Magness Arena at the Daniel L. Ritchie Center for Sports and Wellness at the University of Denver in Colorado. This 90 minute debate will focus on domestic policy in which half of the debate will be on the economy while the other half will address health care, candidate’s views of the role of government and their vision for governing.

Air Time: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 @ 9pm et / 8pm ct / 7pm mt / 6pm pt

Channels: ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC and more including CNN Espanol and others

Moderator: Jim Lehrer (Host of NewsHour on PBS. Lehrer’s 12th time moderating a presidential debate, he also moderated the first presidential debate in 2008, in Oxford, Miss., between then-Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain.)


Obama won the coin toss and will be introduced first, followed by Romney.

Opening Statements:

Neither candidate will have a chance to address the audience directly with an opening statement.
The debate will focus on domestic policy and be divided into six time segments of approximately 15 minutes each on topics to be selected by the moderator and announced several weeks before the debate.

The moderator will open each segment with a question, after which each candidate will have two minutes to respond. The moderator will use the balance of the time in the segment for a discussion of the topic.


There will be six, 15-minute segments focused exclusively on domestic policy. Unlike the primary debates, there will be no applause allowed from the audience.

Segments 1, 2 and 3: The Economy

Segment 4: Health Care

Segment 5: The Role of Government

Segment 6: Governing

Lehrer will ask a question to open discussion in each segment and Obama and Romney will each have two minutes to respond.

Closing Arguments:

Obama and Romney will have two minutes each to deliver their closing statements directly to voters at the end of the debate.
Romney won the coin toss and will make his statement last.

Next Up:

Obama and Romney will meet two more times on the debate floor: Oct. 16 and again Oct. 22.

Via: &

Tune in to today for live-streaming coverage of the first 2012 Presidential Debate from Denver. Coverage kicks off with ABC News’ live preview show at noon, and full debate coverage begins at 8 p.m. Watch all the coverage HERE.