President Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney agreed to these guidelines before the Oct. 3 debate
There's little debate when it comes to how candidates can debate on Tuesday night.
A list of debate rules, obtained and leaked by Time's Mark Halperin, reveals a rigid set of standards agreed on by the candidates for last week's vice presidential debate and the three presidential debates, including the one CNN's Candy Crowley will moderate tonight.
Moderators are not obligated to abide by the rules. But the document says the Commission on Presidential Debates "shall provide each moderate with a copy of this agreement and shall use its best efforts to ensure that the moderators implement the terms of the agreement."
Here are some of the stipulations:
>> "The candidates may not ask each other direct questions during any of the four debates."
>> "The candidates shall not address each other with proposed pledges."
>> "At no time during the October 3 First Presidential debate shall either candidate move from his designated area behind the respective podium."
>> For the Oct. 16 town-hall-style debate, "the moderator will not ask follow-up questions or comment on either the questions asked by the audience or the answers of the candidates during the debate."
>> "The audience members shall not ask follow-up questions asked by the audience or the answers of the candidates during the debate."
>> "[T]he Commission shall take appropriate steps to cut-off the microphone of any … audience member who attempts to pose any question or statement different than that previously posed to the moderator for review."
>> "No candidate may reference or cite any specific individual sitting in a debate audience (other than family members) at any time during a debate."
>> For Tuesday night's town-hall debate: "Each candidate may move about in a pre-designated area, as proposed by the Commission and approved by each campaign, and may not leave that area while the debate is underway."