Obama's Bear-Hugger Invited To Debate

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo

BOCA RATON, Fla. - President Obama's campaign has invited Scott Van Duzer, the bear-hugging Florida restaurant owner who gave Obama a lift last month, to be a guest at tonight's presidential debate.

Obama got a friendly boost - literally - from Van Duzer when he made a surprise stop at his Ft. Pierce, Fla., restaurant. The pizza shop owner enthusiastically embraced the president, physically lifting him off the ground.

"Look at that!" the president exclaimed when he was back on solid ground. "Man, are you a powerlifter or what?" Van Duzer, 46, who stands at 6-foot-3 and weighs 260 pounds, later admitted he can bench press 350 pounds.

Van Duzer will be in the audience at Lynn University as Obama and GOP nominee Mitt Romney face off for the third and final time before election day.

A registered Republican, Van Duzer voted for Obama in 2008 and said last month that he plans to do so again in this election.

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