Obama, Romney playing it safe
For all the small daily dramas of the 2012 campaign, there's a risk-averse dynamic playing out.Neither Barack Obama nor Mitt Romney has made any bold new policy proposals or displayed a free-wheeling personal style.
Part of that is just who they are: Obama always has been known for his cool demeanour, and Romney has discipline built into his corporate pedigree.
However, Obama and Romney are men who know how to gamble: Obama decided to run for president after just two years in the Senate and gave the 'go' order on the Osama bin Laden raid.
Romney entered politics after a career in private equity, where risk is part of the job description.
The president debated for weeks how and when to announce that he supports gay marriage, and only went public after remarks by Vice-President Joe Biden nudged him along.
Romney, too, treated the issue gingerly, even as he disagreed with the president. He restated his opposition to legalising such marriages, but called it a "very tender and sensitive topic" and said he supported extending certain rights to gay couples.