Remember when Senator Obama was invited by Senator McCain to ten town hall meetings with him before the National Convention?
Obama, at the time, replied, “I think that’s a great idea.”
On May 16, 2008, Obama said, he was willing to debate foreign affairs with McCain “Any time. Any place.”
Then it never happened.
Here’s what few journalists are telling you…
McCain wanted to conduct ten informal (unmoderated) town hall meetings where the public could stand and ask impromptu questions of each of the candidate without any guidelines.
Obama refused to attend the unmoderated town meetings but was willing to attend if McCain changed the format of the meetings to moderated Lincoln-Douglas style debates. McCain declined to change the format.
In turn Obama invited McCain to two of his town hall LD debates. Still declining to debate with scripted questions and answers, McCain declined the counter offer of moderated town hall meetings.
For those of you who don’t know what Lincoln/Douglas debate format is…
An “LD” debate is structured. When Lincoln/Douglas debated, one spoke for an hour, the other for an hour and a half, and the first was allowed a half-hour rebuttal. They are staged much like prepared speeches.
In effect, Obama didn’t want to stand in front of a crowd without a prepared speech. McCain didn’t want to stand in front of a crowd with a prepared speech.
Today, in an AP release, Obama’s campaign manager said the three commission-sponsored debates would most likely be the only debates the two candidates will have.
A campaign spokeswoman went on to say Senator Obama had invited Senator McCain to two town hall meetings and they didn’t materialize because, “the McCain campaign had rejected Obama’s proposal for two joint town hall meetings.” Yes. McCain declined. Now you know WHY they both declined each others invitations.
The three commission-sponsored debates will be Sept. 26, Oct. 7 and Oct. 15. The VP debate will be held Oct. 2.