John McCain has proposed a series of debates with Barack Obama in the format that he thinks best suits his skills as a candidate. Naturally, Obama has responded in kind. Taegan Goddard:
According to NBC News, Sen. John McCain proposed a series of ten joint town hall meetings with Sen. Barack Obama beginning June 12 in New York City.
Said McCain: “I suggest the town hall meeting format, because I think it’s the best way… I even propose we travel together on the same plane.”
The Obama campaign responds: “As Barack Obama has said before, the idea of joint town halls is appealing and one that would allow a great conversation to take place about the need to change the direction of this country. We would recommend a format that is less structured and lengthier than the McCain campaign suggests, one that more closely resembles the historic debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas.”
McCain’s in great shape for a 71-year-old who spent five years getting tortured by the Viet Cong but ten multi-hour debates might be a little much for him. And, if not him, certainly the viewing public.
I continue to believe, perhaps naively, that the Obama-McCain fall matchup will be relatively issue oriented compared to recent contests. While surrogates and 527s and others will ratchet up the noise and vitriol, both candidates seem to have a natural aversion to mud-slinging.
More debates rather than fewer and less scripted rather than more would be my preference and, it seems, that of both candidates. If their campaigns don’t talk them out of it.
Photo: ABC News (Getty Images/ Reuters )