The presidential candidates began sparring over energy policy but ended up trading accusations of dirty campaigning.
In Ohio coal country, GOP presumptive nominee Mitt Romney accused President Obama of launching what he called a "war on coal."
"We have 250 years of coal. Why in the heck wouldn't we use it?" Romney recently told a crowd of coal miners.
The former Massachusetts governor said the Obama administration's new "green" regulations have put a strain on the coal industry and job creation.
"He's for all the sources of energy that come from above the ground -- none of those that come from below the ground, like oil and coal and gas," Romney charged.
Meanwhile in Iowa, President Obama focused on wind power, which is popular with many farmers who run wind turbines to sell electricity.
"The wind industry now supports 7,000 jobs here in Iowa," Obama noted.
The president said he wants Congress to pass tax credits for wind energy companies and said Romney and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, are out of touch.
"He said that new sources of energy, like wind, are 'imaginary,'" Obama told an audience in Oskaloosa. "His running mate calls them a 'fad.'"
Then there's the Medicare debate, a hot button issue with senior citizens.
A new pro-Romney ad has led to sparks on the campaign trail, saying, "Obama has cut $716 billion from Medicare. Why? To pay for Obamacare."
Both sides, however, believe the Medicare issue will be a winner for them.
Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden came under fire on the campaign trail for comments he made to a heavily African American audience in Virginia.
"He's going to let the big banks once again write their own rules, unchain Wall Street. They're going to put y'all back in chains," Biden said.
The vice president's defenders note that although "back in chains" was 'in-artfully' phrased, they say Republicans have used a similar metaphor when talking about "unshackling" the private sector.
Romney didn't buy that argument, accusing the Obama campaign of practicing the politics of "hate."
"Mr. President, take your campaign of division and anger and hate back to Chicago, and let us get about rebuilding and reuniting America," Romney said.
"This is what an angry and desperate presidency looks like," he added. "President Obama knows better, promised better, and America deserves better."
The Obama campaign dismissed Romney's remarks as "unhinged."
"Governor Romney's comments tonight seemed unhinged and particularly strange coming at a time when he's pouring tens of millions of dollars into negative ads that are demonstrably false," Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt said in a statement.
Romney's vice presidential pick is producing a much different reaction.
After only 72 hours, Ryan has helped the Romney campaign bring in big bucks. A campaign spokeswoman said the Romney-Ryan ticket has raised $7.4 million online, with more than 101,000 donations.