It was a good town hall meeting, so I’ve heard – if, that is, you believe there’s a town in America where everyone in that town happens to be a McCain supporter or invited guest:
as Fox News reported, McCain’s campaign misled the public about the nature of the event. The forum was “billed by the McCain campaign as a town hall with independent and Democratic voters,” but Fox News noted at the end that the audience was actually “made up of invited guests and supporters,” the Democratic National Committee said in a statement.
I think Barack Obama should just decline all invitations to debate McCain. We don’t need to see McCain debate Barack Obama to see what an idiot McSame is. He does fine all on his own.
Update: He strongly disagrees that people held in US custody have rights. The Supreme Court decision yesterday, he says is, “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country.”
The worst, of course, being the decision the Court made on December 12, 2000.
It’s as though the democratic process has become nothing more than a whistle stop tour of Potemkin villages.
Obama can’t not debate. Debates have become so traditional that a refusal to debate would look like cowardice.
The traditional two or three debates would be all that’s required to demonstrate McCain’s befuddlement and unfitness for highest office.
I’m of two minds about the weekly town hall proposal. On the one hand, McCain is going to be very short of money, and a weekly debate would get him free press attention – and a lot more attention with Obama there than he would on his own. So they think that would be playing into their hands.
On the other hand, a debate a week is a fairly exhausting schedule, and with prep to try to short-circuit impending gaffes, it could really cut into McCain’s other campaigning activities. Not to mention wear him down to where the Vesuvial eruption becomes more likely.
Just Some Fuckhead
McCain is making a big mistake doing the Bush pageant “no dissenting voices” style event. The hecklers are the only thing keeping the lifeless McCain crowd awake.
One of the worst? Really? Worse than Dred Scott? Korematsu? Plessy v. Ferguson?
Independent and Democratic Voters: i.e. Joe Lieberman was there and he voted Independent in the last general election (for himself) and Democratic in the primary before that (for himself)
Kudos to Fox (aphrase I never thought I’d wrote) for pointing out what a Potemkin sham these Repig ‘town hall’ meetings are.
As for debates, I’d like to see a *real* debate where the candidates actually respond and rebut instead of the stilted joint press conferences the hypercontrolled presidential ‘debates’ have become.
Oh yeah, and hold the debates late at night and make it several hours long, so we can see McThuselah have a meltdown or doze off.
No, Obama shouldn’t do the town hall thing. But at least one debate, yes, just for the symbolism. Many Americans don’t realize how short McCain is, only 5′ 7″. When they have the opening handshake at the first debate, Obama will tower over him by a half foot. (and Obama should emphasize that by getting as close to him as he can for the shake.) Yes, I know, that’s an utterly irrational reason to prefer one man over the other. But that sort of thing really impresses the R-Complex of the human brain. Ask any phycologist, they’ll tell you that people are invariably drawn more to the taller man as a leader.
Plus, the macho rhetoric can work for you if you look like John Wayne, or even like Reagan. But when you look like Cotton Hill, it justs makes you seem silly.
McCain can make a gaffe a day till November, and he’ll come out looking like McCain.
Obama need only make one or two and the GOP will hang it around his neck till the election.
This isn’t to say that Obama should hide in a hole or refuse to speak. On the contrary, I’m happy to see him get out there and watch the GOP try to turn molehills into mountains at every opportunity. It only highlights how desperate they are. But agreeing to any of these rigged contests is just asking to get sandbagged by the stupid.
Debates, like the ABC Obama / Hillary debate, that end up spending hours on bullshit trivia while breezing over Iraq, health care, tax policy, and the energy crisis, don’t do Obama any favors in the end. Sure, the media comes out looking as foolish as they ever have. But Obama isn’t going to win any new voters after he’s answered the flag lapel pin issue for the hundred millionth time.
Just Some Fuckhead
Cool, maybe they’ll STFU about RvW now.
they just hired Huckabee.
mmm. smell the objectivity.
I think if McCain wants to hold a series of Town Hall meetings he should be forced to do it in real town halls, not some TV set.
Get his old ass out to the Bayside Grange, or the Fireman’s Pavilion and make it real. Of course, McCain’s biggest fear is for voters to actually view him for what he is, an ethically bankrupt crackpot who sold his soul for some Viagra pills.
And McCain is supposedly NOT running for Bush’s third term? As soon as I heard “Town Hall”, “McCain” and “Fox News” mentioned as an event I could smell rat-fuck all over it, funny thing is McCain out rat-fucked the rat-fuckers.
“one of the worst decisions in the history of this country”
That’s what GOPers are going to say about John McCain, come November.
I thought that was Bob Dole?
Just Some Fuckhead
He was only keating.
The Obama campaign should blast the GOP for their fundamental dishonesty and cowardice in not being brave enough to have a town meeting with a more representative slice of the country. They should point out that McCain is trying to hide from the American people.
And then Obama should agree to at least a few town hall meetings.
Debates are essential because they can give an opportunity for the candidates to make their best case to the people.
And it is simply not enough for Obama to declare that McCain will be Bush III, or to hope that McCain stumbles under the weight of his own obtuseness. There is an opportunity here, if the candidates can get beyond the “beauty contest” and “gotcha” BS offered up by the mainstream media.
Debates and Townhall Meetings could be about the battle for America. The Obama campaign could set the tone and control the message. Here are just a few items that were barely touched on in the primary:
The cronyism in the Bush Administration and the need for competent government (as opposed to the standard bullshit about “big” vs “small” government).
The independence of the US attorney’s office.
Straight talk about taxes and the economy.
The future direction of the Supreme Court.
Civil freakin’ liberties and due process.
Oh yeah, and little things like health care and Iraq.
This goes back to the Roger Ailes and the Nixon campaign formulas of 1968. Nothing new here.
Fill the hall with toadies, make Grampa read from a well-rehearsed script, then get him the hell out of Dodge.
The amazing part of the story is that Faux admitted to it. If that isn’t one of the 7 signs of the Apocalypse, it should be.
McCain also appears to have a nasty habit of going into town halls and lying about his own positions. Josh Marshall has the details.
Really? Right up there with Plessy vs Ferguson and Dred Scott?
In a way I’m glad; I’d felt some sympathy for McCain opposing Guantanamo and at least making noises against torture and humiliation. This at least removes any ambiguity. You now, I’ve been a liberal for a while, but I never dreamed I’d be arguing against Republicans because they strongly opposed Habeas Corpus.
Nobody could have predicted that a GOP candidate for president would fill a hall with supporters and call it a town meeting.
In general I agree with you – take the GOP on head first.
The problem is that there need to be very careful preparations or if Obama isn’t careful these Town Halls will be packed full of people who would chant “Nixon’s the one” if somebody didn’t give them pre-packaged talking points telling them that this year the name to chant is McCain, and the moderators will be Right-tard wanna-be’s (Stephanopoulos – I’m looking at you) trying to make their reputation as the guy who sandbagged Obama and landed the big gaffe.
Nobody is going to make their media reputation as the guy who made McCain drool, look like an idiot and fall over (’cause they don’t give out Captain Obvious medals), but the guy who can blow up the Obama campaign won’t have to do an honest day’s work for the rest of his life.
At this point the media jockeys will be aiming at Obama, for the same reason John Dillinger robbed banks – because that’s where the money is.
Long story short, I think Obama should debate aggressively, but check for ambushes first.
They’re probably pissed they were out-rat-fucked therefore they are trying to one up McCain for it.
Gosh, and Obama’s handlers would NEVER do such a thing to “manage” the process. Insert eye-rolling here.
Wake up people! It’s called Politics. Get to know it, or you will ultimately be dissappointed in your own candidate.
how many invitation-only “Town Hall” meetings has Obama done?
I think Obama should negotiate joint appearance with John McCain where HE feels he is best. McCain wants townhall meetings because the scuttlebut is that is where he is strongest – he didn’t look good during debates with other Republican wannabes earlier this year and he is disastrous when he get close to a teleprompter. I want a joint appearance of Obama and McCain because I think the contrast between the two can only reflect credit on Obama. But, Obama needs to carefully screen the tickets handed out in a townhall meeting and make sure if there are “independents” they are true independents and not trolls; if there are “Democrats,” they are true Democrats and not trolls. If there are Republicans, you just know they are worse than trolls.
Another thing – if debates, no chance in hell that Charlie Gibson, George Stefanopolous, Brian Williams, or Katie Couric are anywhere close.
I imagine that TalkLeft, NoQuarters, etc. would be able to furnish plenty of true Democrats. Maybe we could get that lady from the RBC meeting to show up.
See, no problem. Nothing to worry about.
The Other Steve
If McCain comes to Minnesota for a townhall I intend on trying to go and ask him “I’m curious how you intend on differentiating yourself from President Bush given his low approval rating. Is it your opinion that President Bush has done a lousy job implementing Republican policies, or are Republican policies simply lousy?”
Which is why the Obama Campaign has rejected network offers to sponsor townhalls. They specifically want an unmoderated format ala Lincoln-Douglass. Relax folks. Obama is a quick study. He’s not going to let himself be ambushed in a faux debate again.
“Why do Iraqis have better bridges than us?”
The NY Post just reported that Tim Russert died. Is this true?
yep (confirmed by NYT)
It’s clear now what Darrell had been doing all this time…
And it really hits home:
Nothing like wasting tax dollars trying to defend your rep against a college town full of dirty hippies (and basketball champions). Seriously, the LJWorld? Whats the readership? 8?
Breaking story…Tim Russert dies of heart attack!
Breaking story…Tim Russert dies of heart attack!
The Other Steve
Holy shit. He wasn’t that old.
Sherrell beat me to it. Top headline on Drudge.
Just heard it also. Truly shocking. He wasn’t that old.
I think I’ll just keep my TV off for the next week or so. It’s going to be non-stop Timmeh.
My condolences to his family though. 58 is way too young. Friday the 13th too.
OMG They killed Timmeh!
Seriously tho, this is sad news and I send my condolences.
Yep, Obama should not allow himself to be sandbagged. But I would presume that for any town hall style meeting, both candidates would be able to invite their share of guests.
In an ideal world, however, a neutral group such as the League of Women voters would handle the guest list (from voter rolls or other neutral lists), and neither candidate would be able to pack the audience.
But I would also like to see Obama turn to McCain supporters and ask a series of simple questions: “How many of you are multi-millionaires? How many of you have lost a job or know someone who lost their job? How many of you know someone who lost their home or is in danger of losing their home? Is it acceptable to you that the GOP rescues the financiers and lets your neighbor fall by the wayside? ”
But, like I said, I also want formal debates. But I add a couple of twists. I would allow a candidate to say to a moderator, “That’s a stupid question. I won’t bother to respond to it, and I will add my own remarks on the topic of the question.”
I would also expect, no demand, that the debate moderators do the following: “To the candidates — We have fact checkers as an official part of the debate. If you lie about yourself or your opponent, and we catch you, we will call you on it immediately. We won’t leave it for post debate analysis or spin.”
There are many things the republicans do that piss me off, but this is the one thing that really gets under my skin. The idea that they can make their really weak and pathetic candidate look more popular by standing him in front of screened audience is insulting to most peoples’ intelligence. In my mind this is the main reason Bush got very little done in his crappy tenure. Every time there was some legislation that he wanted to pass, like privatizing social security, he go speak in front of these stacked audiences, rather than real people. Bush would extol the virtues of whatever crap he was peddling, audience would clap and magically nothing would get passed. Who wants four more years of this BS?
And yet Darth Cheney lives!
Who will he choose as his next mouthpiece?
Has anyone gotten the news that Tim Russert died today?!?!?!
Holy shit. The mainstream media just lost one of their shining lights. The MSM will not be the same. He will be greatly missed.
Now I’m suspicious that BC didn’t mention Russert.
Tim did die of a heart attack, per MSNBC.com
Yeah, I was never a fan of Russert. But really, it wasn’t his fault. Yup, he was probably one of the biggest stars of that particular genre of entertainment-journalism, and one I despise, but all the same, he had skills.
Rest in peace dude.
The genre, not Russert himself, btw.
You’re SOOOOOOOOOOOO not getting let in that door. Unless you can show them a College Republican membership card, or perhaps come dressed in a wetsuit and dildo, you’re SOL.
Speaking of townhalls….did you see that McCant wants Obama to agree to….wait for it….hold…..TEN of these?
TEN mo’fuckin debates, ALL townhall format. Like 2 a month. Like this is the high school debate team. And I’m sure none of them could start after 7, McCant’s bedtime.
Just got it from AmericaBLOG. Holy shit.
drrr….AMERICAblog. RIP timmeh
It would be better if he took the genre with him.
That was my reaction.
Damn. Very sad.
It’s funny how I was remarking to a friend that I could see Russert as Obama’s Press Secretary.
I’d expect debate fatigue from the public, especially after the primaries. Not sure who that would be worse for. Given MUPper enthusiasm, maybe worse for McCain?
Obama called McCain’s bluff on 10 town halls.
Well, since WWII the taller candidate has received more votes in every presidential election. Votes became passe in 2000, I know, but still.
“Senatuh Obamuh–do you hate Americuh more than yuh baby mama, or the same amount?”