If you watched the second presidential debate on Tuesday night -- besides coming away with some hilarious quips about "binders full of women" -- you probably felt like that had to be one of the most contentious confrontations between presidential candidates of ALL TIME. President Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney were at one another's throats. So it makes it even crazier to think that last night, at the annual Alfred E. Smith Memorial Dinner -- which has been a stop for the two main presidential candidates during several U.S. election years since Nixon ran against JFK -- the two were somehow able to put the gloves on, and play nice, trading not just jabs but light-hearted jokes about themselves and their opponent.
Here, several of the best of the funniest/memorable quotes of the night ...
Mitt Romney, who was of course clad in white tie formalwear: "It's nice to finally relax and wear what Ann and I wear around the house."
President Obama told the crowd: "Please take your seats, otherwise Clint Eastwood will yell at [you]."
Romney: "I was actually hoping the president would bring Joe Biden along this evening, because he'll laugh at anything!"
Obama: "[I] felt really well rested after the nice long nap I had in the first debate. ... There are worst things that can happen to you on your anniversary than forgetting to buy a gift!"
Romney, discussing how he prepares for the debates, said his strategy was to "find the biggest available straw man and mercilessly attack it; Big Bird didn't even see it coming!"
Obama: "I particularly want to apologize to (MSNBC's) Chris Matthews. Four years ago, I gave him a thrill up his leg; this time around I gave him a stroke."
Romney, explaining both candidates rely on crucial people: "I have my beautiful wife, Ann; he has Bill Clinton."
Obama, discussing being attacked after his overseas trip in 2008 for being "a celebrity, because I was so popular with our allies overseas. And I have to say I'm impressed with how Governor Romney has avoided that problem."
Romney on NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo having aspirations for higher office: "Let me get this straight. The man has put in one term as a governor, he has a father who happened to be a governor, and he thinks that's enough to run for president!"
Obama on how the campaign seems to be dragging on forever: "But Paul Ryan assured me that we've only been running for 2 hours and 50-something minutes!"
Romney to the press, saying he had seen early reports from the dinner. "Headline: ‘Obama Embraced by Catholics, Romney Dines with Rich People.’”
Obama: "I've heard some people say, 'Barack, you're not as young as you used to be. Where’s that golden smile? Where’s that pep in your step?' And I say, 'Settle down, Joe, I'm trying to run a Cabinet meeting.'"
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