While their spouses duked it out over healthcare, the tax code and unemployment in the first 2012 presidential debate, Michelle Obama and Ann Romney perched proudly in the front row at the University of Denver for the big night.

Let's look at style, shall we? FLOTUS wore a dress and a blue jacket from Preen's fall 2011 collection, and it was a thrifty choice: she'd worn it twice before, our favorite Mrs. O blog notes.

Mrs. Romney, on the other hand, opted for an all-white look plucked from a well-chosen neutral color palette. (Real talk: she's had some recent disasters with black and bright colors.) And... did she cut her hair? We'll explore that more on Thursday.

Though jabs flew onstage, FLOTUS and Mrs. Romney -- recent cookie recipe foes -- greeted each other warmly, even pausing for a hug.

See pics below! Who do you like better, style-wise?

Quick Poll

Who had the better outfit?

VOTE

PHOTOS:

Loading Slideshow...

Want more? Be sure to check out HuffPost Style on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and Pinterest.