TIME’s Presidential Debate Drinking Game: Last Call

Tonight marks the final debate between the two presidential candidates. Here, we present the rules of enjoying (or simply enduring) tonight with a beverage in hand.

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Scott Olson / Getty Images

Barack Obama, as a presidential candidate in 2008, drinks a beer with Peg Fegley, owner of the Bethlehem Brew Works April 20, 2008 in Bethlehem, Pa.

Happy Monday debate night! Of all nights of the week, this is probably the one on which you shouldn’t be playing drinking games, but it’s the last presidential debate, so we say there’s no better time to enjoy some refreshment amid the rhetoric. For us at TIME, it’s the last presidential debate in an Olympiad.  While you can check out what we did for round 2’s town hall style-debate, this game — like tonight’s face-off in Boca Raton, Fla. — will focus on foreign policy. As always, drink responsibly.

Day 1

  • Take a sip every time Romney mentions what he will do on “Day 1.”

Day 2

  • Take two sips if Obama responds, “And on Day 2?”


Apology Tour

  • If Romney says Obama began his presidency on an “apology tour,” yell “No Apologies!” and down a Pabst Blue Ribbon.  It’s too late to apologize.  Right, Timbaland?

(LISTObama vs. Romney: Which Presidential Debate Drinking Game Is Right for You?)

Arab Spring

  • Have a sip of water. Muslims don’t drink.


  • The New York Times reported over the weekend that the U.S. and Iran will hold bilateral talks on Iran’s nuclear program after the U.S. elections, although the administration quickly backtracked. Find a partner and celebrate every time the word “bilateral” is uttered.

“Special relationship”

  • America calls its relationship with Great Britain “special,” like you would to an ex with tender feelings. If a candidate mentions the “special relationship,” toast the Brits with a Pimm’s Cup.

Osama Bin Laden

  • If Obama mentions killing Bin Laden, take a sip of your drink.
  • If Romney mentions it first, chug.
  • If Romney says he killed Bin Laden, welcome to our game, Ohio Republicans.

It’s All Political

  • If Obama accuses Republicans of politicizing Benghazi, as many Democrats in Congress have, take a drink.



  • If President Obama tries to “Mediscare” Boca Raton’s seniors by claiming Romney will gut their health program — remember, this is a foreign policy debate — take a drink.

(MORE: The 10 Worst Debate Mistakes a Candidate Can Make)

Around the World

  • There are a few hotspots around the world that the candidates are sure to talk about. Here are a few they aren’t, and the corresponding drink if mentioned:

Euro Zone

  • If either candidate mentions France’s role in fixing the Euro Zone economy, pour and drink a generous glass of red wine.
  • If Angela Merkel and Germany are invoked, down a beer stein full of lager.


  • Take a drink if either candidate says he’ll listen to his generals.
  • Take two drinks if either candidate says he will not listen to his generals.


  • If either candidate criticizes Israel, drive to your local liquor store and consume one full shopping cart of Arak.


  • Romney will try to shift the game back to the economy by saying China’s growing manufacturing sector has taken away American jobs.  Obama will protect his economic record by mentioning a WTO case his administration filed against China.  To drown this out, take a drink every time you hear “WTO.” (Make each drink a shot of baijiu if you want to make sure you never hear anything again)

(MORE: The Hofstra Debate: No Clear Winner)

Rose Garden

  • During the last debate, Romney swung and missed when recalling President Obama’s response to the Libya embassy attack.  If Obama defends his response to the Benghazi attacks by uttering, 
“I stood in the Rose Garden…” sip some Four Roses bourbon. It’s delicious.
  • If Obama asks Romney to “check the transcript,” drink twice.

Currency Manipulator

  • Take a sip if Romney calls China a “currency manipulator.” Take two sips if he calls on the Fed to to weaken the American dollar.


  • If you hear the word “withdrawal,” take a drink.


  • If Obama diagnoses his opponent with “Romnesia,” and Romney responds that his opponent has “Obamnesia,” put down your drink and turn off the TV. You are watching the most childish debate to ever occur. So you should probably just go to bed; it’s past America’s bedtime.

Bob Schieffer

  • To finish, pour one out for the moderator. After the first debate, Jim Lehrer was attacked for being too soft. Martha Raddatz kept the peace between an energetic Biden and a plucky Ryan. Candy Crowley drew praise and scorn for her active management of last week’s town hall debate, but to be fair she was scrutinized even before she took the stage.  These journalists are pros, and all four deserve to be toasted.

Then take some aspirin, drink a glass of water and go sleep it off. We’ll see you in 2016.  Cheers!

(COVER STORY: Blue Truth, Red Truth)