A surprise (for once)?: With the level of preparation that goes into these debates by both candidates — not to mention the litigating of the format to within an inch of its life by the campaign lawyers — surprises are a rarity. But the foreign policy-themed debate does offer the possibility that a question is asked for which one (or both) of the candidates doesn't have an answer at the ready. (Gerald Ford, anyone? "There is no Soviet domination of Eastern Europe.") A gap in knowledge would be very problematic for either man, but even more so for Romney, who, as mentioned above, largely remains an unknown (or unproven) commodity on foreign policy for most voters.
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Cillizza writes The Fix, a politics blog for The Washington Post.