Washington: US President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney Wednesday fought over economic topics including job creation and the government deficit during their first presidential debate held in Denver, Colorado.
President Barack Obama, from the Democratic Party, who is seeking his re-election, said the US has been back to economic growth and job creation, as the nation's private sector has created about 5 million job opportunities in the past 30 months, reported Xinhua.
"I also want to close those loopholes that are giving incentives for companies that are shipping jobs overseas. I want to provide tax breaks for companies that are investing here in the United States," he said.
The US should strengthen the middle class to bolster the economic recovery, and reduce the government's deficit in a balanced way including cutting government outlays and tax increase that were strongly opposed by Mitt Romney, Obama stressed.
The Republican challenger Romney blasted Obama on his failed economic policies, which Romney said had led to higher gasoline and food prices, lower US household income and spiked federal government debt.
Romney stressed his five-point plan to create millions of new jobs in the next four years, including achieving North America's energy independence, opening new foreign markets for US goods and services, slashing government spending and reducing taxes on small businesses.
Obama and Romney will hold three debates Oct 3, Oct 16 and Oct 22 before the election day, while US Vice President Joe Biden and Romney's running mate Paul Ryan will hold a debate Oct 11.
Experts believe that the US economy has revamped over the past four years despite lingering challenges for the nation including high unemployment rate hovering at 8.1 percent and slow economic growth pace at 1.3 percent in the second quarter of this year.