The presidential campaign took a break in New York Thursday evening, as President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney traded partisan speeches for stand-up comedy routines at the annual Al Smith Dinner.
The Catholic fundraiser has been a tradition on the campaign trail for 67 years. There were well-scripted moments of laughter from both candidates.
"The unemployment rate is at its lowest level since I took office. I don't have a joke here. I just thought it would be useful to remind everybody," the president told the crowd early in his speech.
He went to poke fun at his first debate performance: "As some of you may have noticed, I had a lot more energy in our second debate. I felt really rested after the nice long nap I had in the first debate."
Both candidates took light jabs at themselves and each other.
Romney told the audience: "President Obama and I are each very lucky to have one person who is always in our corner, someone that we can lean on. I have my beautiful wife Ann and he has Bill Clinton."
Both men returned to the campaign trail Friday with Obama visiting Virginia and Romney visiting Florida, both battleground states.