Rampant foreclosures, high unemployment and a volatile auto industry are the stark backdrop for Wednesday's Republican presidential debate in Michigan, as the state continues to struggle from the 2009 recession and weakened economy.
The GOP hopefuls likely will also have to contend with the firestorm surrounding businessman Herman Cain, who has been accused by at least four women of inappropriate sexual behavior during the 1990s.
All eight candidates will gather at Oakland University, just outside Detroit. The city's fortunes have fallen with the decline of the American auto industry, and Michigan native Mitt Romney, Cain and their rivals likely will have to explain their opposition to a government bailout. President Barack Obama pushed the program that saved Chrysler and General Motors and the tens of thousands of jobs they provide.
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