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Pizza Hut backpedals on presidential debate stunt, moves contest online

Mitt Romney, left, takes a bite of pizza during lunch with his wife Ann while campaigning at Village Pizza in Newport, N.H., Dec. 20, 2011, and then-Senator Barack Obama, right, takes a bite of pizza at American Dream Pizza in Corvallis, Ore., March 21, 2008.

Pizza Hut is rethinking its contest daring people to ask "Sausage or Pepperoni?" at the presidential debate Tuesday.

After the stunt triggered backlash last week, the company says it's moving the promotion online, where a contestant will be randomly selected to win free pizza for life.

The pizza delivery chain had offered the prize — a pie a week for 30 years or a check for $15,600 — to anyone who posed the question to either President Barack Obama or Republican candidate Mitt Romney during the live Town Hall-style debate.

But blogs and media outlets immediately took the pizza delivery chain to task for trying to capitalize on the election buzz by injecting itself into the process.