You’ve heard all the commentary about Round One of the Barack Obama-Mitt Romney presidential campaign.
Well, the bell is about to ring for Round Two. The two men will square off once again, this time at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., for a 90-minute match. The format will be different than the first go-round. It’s a town hall event moderated by veteran CNN correspondent Candy Crowley. President Obama, the Democrat, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the Republican, will field questions from the audience in addition to those posed by Crowley.
The word on the street is that Obama has to improve from his first debate performance and that Romney has to maintain the momentum he gained from that first showdown.
The debate airs Tuesday on KACV at 8 p.m. And yes, the stakes for this encounter are sky high. Tune in on KACV to listen and learn more about these two men, one of whom will take the oath of office next Jan. 20 as Leader of the Free World.
But in the hour before the debate, beginning at 7 p.m. on KACV, PBS is airing another fascinating special about a key element of this campaign.
It’s called “Race 2012,” and it’s not about a footrace between two men. It deals with the role race is playing in a campaign that features one candidate seeking re-election as the nation’s first African-American president.
Then-U.S. Sen. Barack Obama made history four years ago when he was elected to the presidency. He proclaimed his intention to put race aside as he governed the nation. Has he succeeded? Surveys show the nation has a ways to go.
We remain divided. Polling surveys indicate quite clearly that racial minorities still favor Obama by a wide margin over Romney; conversely, Romney enjoys a significant advantage over Obama among Anglo voters.
But against this backdrop, it’s important to examine the nation’s changing demographics. That’s especially true in Texas, which is seeing a huge increase in its Latino population. What’s more, African-American voters who once moved from the South to escape racial discrimination are now moving back to the region — a migration that figures to change voting patterns in the future.
“Race 2012” serves as a worthy prelim to Tuesday night’s main event.