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Let Me Start: Debate night!

The town hall format of the debate may favor the president, but make no mistake, Mitt Romney is very good at debating.
AP Photo (Stage for  presidential town hall debate at Hofstra University)
AP Photo

The town hall format of the debate may favor the president, but make no mistake, Mitt Romney is very good at debating. It's how well he handles an opponent who challenges his misrepresentations that will be the big thing to watch tonight. If the president allows Romney free reign like he did at their first debate, Democrats are in for a long night. But if the president can stand up to Romney and challenge him--respectfully--then Romney can be knocked off his game.

Debate coverage starts tonight at 7 p.m. ET with Hardball with Chris Matthews, live from Hofstra. Then Chris and Rachel Maddow lead msnbc's pre-debate coverage at 8 p.m. ET. The 90-minute debate starts at 9 p.m. ET, and we'll be back at 10:30 for all the reaction and analysis. And at midnight, stay up with us for a live edition of Hardball.

Politico lists its five things to watch for in tonight's debate.

Be sure to read Ezra Klein's great article in the Washington Post about how President Obama lost "the vision thing."

A Romney-Ryan victory could eventually mean the overturning of Roe v. Wade, ending a woman's right to choose a safe, legal abortion.