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Author Topic: Lincoln-Douglas style debates with McCain & Obama?  (Read 2786 times)
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helot2000
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« on: June 05, 2008, 03:21:48 AM »

Hold on to your Canadian hat, CSL...

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John McCain asked Barack Obama to join him in 10 town hall meetings with voters in the coming months, and their campaigns began negotiations to make it happen. McCain, the Republican nominee-in-waiting, made the request Wednesday, the day after Obama clinched the Democratic nomination.  "I don't think we need any big media-run production, no process question from reporters, no spin rooms," McCain said. "Just two Americans running for office in the greatest nation on earth, responding to the questions of the people whose trust we must earn."

Obama campaign manager David Plouffe said Wednesday that while the idea is appealing, the campaign would recommend a less-structured, lengthier exchange more in line with the historic Lincoln-Douglas debates.  In the Lincoln-Douglas debates, held seven times during Abraham Lincoln's losing Senate campaign against Stephen Douglas in Illinois in 1858, a candidate spoke for an hour, the other for an hour and a half, and the first candidate was allowed a half-hour rebuttal.
Excellent move on both sides.  Given our much shorter attention spans, we'll have to trim those times down a bit.  Let's see, potential viewers include CSL, myself and of course, Newt Gingrich.  Hmmm, they might want to stream this as I doubt the networks would host it... icon_wink
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CSL
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« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2008, 04:04:38 AM »

I would love to watch some long Lincoln-Douglas style debates - say a thirty minute opening by Obama, followed by an hour rebuttal by McCain, and then a thirty minute closing by Obama. Alternated thereafter.

I'd love it if any debates on this kind of structure were based solely on one topic at a time too - say ones on Iraq, foreign policy, climate change, the economy, etc.
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Eduardo X
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« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2008, 04:09:13 AM »

I like McCain's idea or town hall meetings. It means that people will have a voice in what is discussed. Questions won't be ignored or filtered, and answers won't be pre-written.
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« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2008, 04:10:44 AM »

It's great.  I wonder how much yelling is going on from all the other networks at ABC for completely ruining the standard format with that horrible Obama/Clinton production of theirs.   icon_lol
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« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2008, 04:19:29 AM »

Quote from: Eduardo X on June 05, 2008, 04:09:13 AM

I like McCain's idea or town hall meetings. It means that people will have a voice in what is discussed. Questions won't be ignored or filtered, and answers won't be pre-written.

I agree. I ignore the debates because of the canned approach. The only thing each candidate slings back and forth at one another are sound bites, not real answers or discussions. Hell, it'd be worth it just to have both candidates genuinely debating and bringing in the people on health care alone. One of my favorite episodes of "The West Wing" was when they did the debate in season seven and it was just the candidates on stage debating one another on issue after issue after issue. I turned to my wife and said, "God! Wouldn't it be great if they actually did that in real life? I'd actually watch."
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McBa1n
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« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2008, 08:23:23 AM »

I really like the idea. This approach favors McCain, though. He's not a good speaker of prepared speeches, he might be more himself in that setting and less of the 'neocon buttyboy' that he's sold out to.
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Trappin
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« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2008, 08:46:06 AM »

The media labeled McCain a maverick 25 years ago - which was just beltway speak for Republican backstabber. Now he's a neocon buttboy?

Do you even have any conservative friends or are we just Ted Rall/ Tom Tomorrow caricatures to you?

Nuts. Absolutely effin crazy.

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Blackadar
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« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2008, 12:28:11 PM »

Why should Obama agree to this?  McLame can't get a decent crowd together while Obama draws tens of thousands to his rallies and is just trying to use Obama's "star power" to get an audience.  From a campaign strategy, I see this being more risky for Obama and therefore unacceptable.  On the flip side, an "unfiltered" debate would be a great opportunity to get McLame to blow his notorious temper. 
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Blackadar
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« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2008, 12:31:14 PM »

Quote from: Trappin on June 05, 2008, 08:46:06 AM

The media labeled McCain a maverick 25 years ago - which was just beltway speak for Republican backstabber. Now he's a neocon buttboy?

Do you even have any conservative friends or are we just Ted Rall/ Tom Tomorrow caricatures to you?

Nuts. Absolutely effin crazy.



25 years ago he was a maverick.  The maverick died after the 2000 campaign.  Look at the last 8 years...he sold his soul and reversed many major policy positions to turn into a Bush clone. 

It's absolutely effin pathetic.
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Dan_Theman
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« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2008, 12:44:27 PM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 12:31:14 PM

Quote from: Trappin on June 05, 2008, 08:46:06 AM

The media labeled McCain a maverick 25 years ago - which was just beltway speak for Republican backstabber. Now he's a neocon buttboy?

Do you even have any conservative friends or are we just Ted Rall/ Tom Tomorrow caricatures to you?

Nuts. Absolutely effin crazy.



25 years ago he was a maverick.  The maverick died after the 2000 campaign.  Look at the last 8 years...he sold his soul and reversed many major policy positions to turn into a Bush clone. 

It's absolutely effin pathetic.
For whatever it's worth, 25 years ago Michael Jackson was singing "Billie Jean is not my lover" on the radio, while today ...

I wonder whether Mccain's switcheroo was a case of him changing or rather our perceptions of him changing (or both).
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DarkEL
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« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2008, 12:56:39 PM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 12:28:11 PM

Why should Obama agree to this?  McLame can't get a decent crowd together while Obama draws tens of thousands to his rallies and is just trying to use Obama's "star power" to get an audience.  From a campaign strategy, I see this being more risky for Obama and therefore unacceptable.  On the flip side, an "unfiltered" debate would be a great opportunity to get McLame to blow his notorious temper. 

Absolutely right

The other main reason McCain wants this is because it's essentially free advertising for him. Obama has proven that he can get people behind him who are willing to give and I believe that the McCain campaign is worried about being massively outspent (just as Clinton has whined about for the last few months).  That's why once it started to become clear that Obama was going to be the candidate that McCain started pushing for the earlier proposal that candidates can only spend a certain amount of money (too tired to remember the proper name for that at the moment), and now this.
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cheeba
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« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2008, 01:03:24 PM »

It would be a mistake for McCain to allow Obama (look, I can write down both names without reworking them into something stupid - it's because I'm an adult!) to go off for long periods of time, like 20+ minutes.

Obama's strength is with speeches. His weakness, or one of them anyways, is in debates. His debates with Hillary showed he tenses up or something, he loses his eloquence and is generally a bit awkward. This is probably why McCain is challenging Obama to 10 of them.

Personally, I like the actual debate idea. No time limits, just throw up a question until it's done and then move on. These town hall things always get these stupid citizens who are either planted by the party or who lamely attempt to get their view across with an obnoxious question.
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Moliere
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« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2008, 03:49:24 PM »

Quote from: cheeba on June 05, 2008, 01:03:24 PM

These town hall things always get these stupid citizens who are either planted by the party or who lamely attempt to get their view across with an obnoxious question.

True that. People should not be allowed to ask their own questions. Let people who can actually speak relay the questions to the candidates. My biggest problem is that most questions from citizens are things like "I have this problem, what government program are you going to implement to help me?"
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« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2008, 04:25:16 PM »

Quote from: cheeba on June 05, 2008, 01:03:24 PM

Obama's strength is with speeches. His weakness, or one of them anyways, is in debates. His debates with Hillary showed he tenses up or something, he loses his eloquence and is generally a bit awkward. This is probably why McCain is challenging Obama to 10 of them.

We'll see. It's hard to know how Obama will do in these debates since the debates with Hillary were a whole different animal. They didn't differ much on policy and just that made the debates awkward.

With McCain vs. Obama there are true differences and also there won't be any pulling of punches for the sake of not hurting a member of their own party too much. I think Obama will do much better in these debates, but again, we'll see.

This is a smart move by McCain, but a gamble too. A gamble he had to take due to the money disadvantage, but a risk because he simply doesn't know how Obama will perform in debates like this.
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« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2008, 04:41:38 PM »

McCain's in a rough spot either way.  Separate stages, and Obama gets the big crowds and the media buzz.  Same stage, and McCain will look older and less dynamic in direct comparison.  On the surface, this looks a lot like Clinton vs Dole in 1996 or Clinton vs Bush in 1992.

Perhaps McCain should have suggested a ten week bowling series, winner take all.  icon_cool
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CSL
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« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2008, 09:52:40 PM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 12:31:14 PM

It's absolutely effin pathetic.

Which is how you come off looking when you can't even be so mature as to spell the Republican nominee's name correctly.
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Blackadar
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« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2008, 10:28:51 PM »

Quote from: CSL on June 05, 2008, 09:52:40 PM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 12:31:14 PM

It's absolutely effin pathetic.

Which is how you come off looking when you can't even be so mature as to spell the Republican nominee's name correctly.

Ooh...witty!     Roll Eyes

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McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame 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McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame McLame

There was a farmer who had a cow and McLame was his name-o

Wall of text crits for 1,000,000...McLame dies

All your McLame are belong to us







You readin' me yet, junior?
« Last Edit: June 05, 2008, 10:31:13 PM by Blackadar » Logged

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Geezer
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« Reply #17 on: June 05, 2008, 11:33:55 PM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 12:28:11 PM

Why should Obama agree to this?

Because regardless of the tactical disadvantage, the American people deserve it.  This election is about "change" all right, but the "change" it needs to be about is not a change in policy direction but rather about a change in politics.  I don't care who it's "better" for - the American people should have real, unfiltered access to the unpolished, unspun candidates, and this is as close as we can reasonably get.  Look, I'm generally fairly liberal, and I'm a risktaker, so I'm fascinated by the idea that Obama represents an unknown roll of the dice that *could* be revolutionary.  I'm ecstatic that Obama got this far and allows the country a real chance to *maybe* radically change course.  But it's time to start to see what he actually wants to *do*, because the thing is, if I voted solely on self-interest, I'd vote straight R ticket.  I vote D because I vote my conscience, not my personal well-being, but Obama needs to convince me the sacrifice is worth it.

« Last Edit: June 06, 2008, 12:56:49 AM by Geezer » Logged
CSL
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« Reply #18 on: June 05, 2008, 11:53:02 PM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 10:28:51 PM

You readin' me yet, junior?

The level of maturity from your posts continues to amaze me.

Of course, you still look the fool.
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Blackadar
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« Reply #19 on: June 05, 2008, 11:57:28 PM »

Quote from: CSL on June 05, 2008, 11:53:02 PM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 10:28:51 PM

You readin' me yet, junior?

The level of maturity from your posts continues to amaze me.

Of course, you still look the fool.

Well, the continued personal attacks from your posts don't amaze me.  They're the refuge of the intellectually bankrupt.
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Brendan
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« Reply #20 on: June 06, 2008, 12:02:15 AM »

Quote from: Geezer on June 05, 2008, 11:33:55 PM

I'm ecstatic that Obama got this far and allows the country a real change to *maybe* radically change course.  But it's time to start to see what he actually wants to *do*, because the thing is, if I voted solely on self-interest, I'd vote straight R ticket.  I vote D because I vote my conscience, not my personal well-being, but Obama needs to convince me the sacrifice is worth it.

While I'm not convinced that your self-interest would actually be served by any republican candidate, I understand why you'd want to understand Obama's policy positions.  I don't personally find townhall-style meetings very revealing because the questions are typically fairly surface-level.  You can certainly get the policy prescriptions of Obama's from his site if you're looking to understand what he'd implement.

I think I dropped this article from the latest Esquire in some other thread also, but it bears re-linking and gets to the meat of your concern:  "Convince me."
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CSL
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« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2008, 12:15:06 AM »

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 11:57:28 PM

Quote from: CSL on June 05, 2008, 11:53:02 PM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 10:28:51 PM

You readin' me yet, junior?

The level of maturity from your posts continues to amaze me.

Of course, you still look the fool.

Well, the continued personal attacks from your posts don't amaze me.  They're the refuge of the intellectually bankrupt.

Pretty funny coming from you, the person who hasn't contributed absolutely anything to this thread. Furthermore, it seems the intellectually bankrupt person around here is the one who can't manage to spell the presumptive Republican nominee's name correctly.
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Blackadar
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« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2008, 12:32:54 AM »

Quote from: CSL on June 06, 2008, 12:15:06 AM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 11:57:28 PM

Quote from: CSL on June 05, 2008, 11:53:02 PM

Quote from: Blackadar on June 05, 2008, 10:28:51 PM

You readin' me yet, junior?

The level of maturity from your posts continues to amaze me.

Of course, you still look the fool.

Well, the continued personal attacks from your posts don't amaze me.  They're the refuge of the intellectually bankrupt.

Pretty funny coming from you, the person who hasn't contributed absolutely anything to this thread. Furthermore, it seems the intellectually bankrupt person around here is the one who can't manage to spell the presumptive Republican nominee's name correctly.

Ding ding!  We have a contestant!  Thank you for playing!  Of course, you're wrong.  It's spelled correctly exactly *once* in my posts on this thread.  It's like a game of find Waldo.  Enjoy!

I'm going to spell it "McLame" for as long as the name fits.  If it bothers you that much, seek medical attention.
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Geezer
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« Reply #23 on: June 06, 2008, 01:07:27 AM »

Quote from: Brendan on June 06, 2008, 12:02:15 AM

Quote from: Geezer on June 05, 2008, 11:33:55 PM

I'm ecstatic that Obama got this far and allows the country a real change to *maybe* radically change course.  But it's time to start to see what he actually wants to *do*, because the thing is, if I voted solely on self-interest, I'd vote straight R ticket.  I vote D because I vote my conscience, not my personal well-being, but Obama needs to convince me the sacrifice is worth it.

While I'm not convinced that your self-interest would actually be served by any republican candidate, I understand why you'd want to understand Obama's policy positions.  I don't personally find townhall-style meetings very revealing because the questions are typically fairly surface-level.  You can certainly get the policy prescriptions of Obama's from his site if you're looking to understand what he'd implement.

I think I dropped this article from the latest Esquire in some other thread also, but it bears re-linking and gets to the meat of your concern:  "Convince me."

My personal self-interest would be served in the immediate factual sense, meaning that I have no need for universal health care, I'm happy paying low tax rates on capital gains, and I am not personally looking to marry another guy.  That said, I understand and feel compassionate toward those that are personally effected by those issues and others, and my belief in the the basic morality of those issues and others compels me to vote for the person that generally shares my social point of view as opposed to voting my wallet or my individual living situation. 

As for Esquire, I have the issue smile  It's a solid article.  But what I want to see is a live, indepth mano-a-mano point/counterpoint between our two choices in the upcoming election, and I want it in a setting that is as unscripted as possible. 

Anyway... I'm just saying I like the idea smile
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cheeba
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« Reply #24 on: June 06, 2008, 03:27:16 AM »

Quote from: Geezer on June 05, 2008, 11:33:55 PM

Look, I'm generally fairly liberal, and I'm a risktaker, so I'm fascinated by the idea that Obama represents an unknown roll of the dice that *could* be revolutionary.  I'm ecstatic that Obama got this far and allows the country a real chance to *maybe* radically change course.
Lots of people feel this way, but it ignores the very foundation of American federal government. Our government is designed specifically to be very, very difficult to change. And it has done that job very well for the past 230 years. Hell, look how difficult it is to get a simple bill through, let alone anything radical like health care reform.

Of course, nothing will change at all if we don't try, so I see nothing wrong with the attempt. I just think this whole Change thing Obama's running on has tremendous potential to disillusion entire generations.
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naednek
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« Reply #25 on: June 06, 2008, 03:50:46 AM »

Blackadar, please stop spamming the topic, and you might want to take a break from politics, you're reaching into unbreakable territory.
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Mr. Fed
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« Reply #26 on: June 06, 2008, 05:00:57 AM »

I'm looking forward to Fox News' coverage.
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helot2000
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« Reply #27 on: June 06, 2008, 12:17:47 PM »

Quote from: Mr. Fed on June 06, 2008, 05:00:57 AM

I'm looking forward to Fox News' coverage.
Fox spins an alternative reality so pitching an alternative history comes as little surprise.   
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« Reply #28 on: June 06, 2008, 04:01:19 PM »

Quote from: Mr. Fed on June 06, 2008, 05:00:57 AM

I'm looking forward to Fox News' coverage.

For Lincoln, I'm surprised they didn't put up a picture of a Town Car.
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