Clinton Suggests Four One-on-One Debates With Obama

Feb 5, 2008  •  Post A Comment

Predicting that Super Tuesday will end up coming out “inconclusive” on the Democratic side, the Clinton campaign said today Sen. Hillary Clinton has offered to do four one-on-one debates with Sen. Barack Obama in coming days, with one hosted by Fox News Channel.
Under pressure from liberal activists, Democrats had declined to participate in past Fox News Channel debates, forcing two debates to be canceled. The activists’ complaints that Fox’s news coverage wasn’t fair drew loud support from former Sen. John Edwards, who has since exited the Democratic race.
It wasn’t immediately certain if Sen. Obama will participate in any or all of the debates. An aide said the campaign is still examining Sen. Obama’s post-Super Tuesday schedule, including debate possibilities.
The Clinton campaign’s announcement comes amidst financial reports showing the Obama campaign in January raised more than twice as much as the Clinton campaign did, potentially making it easier for the Obama campaign to buy post-Super Tuesday ads. The Clinton campaign denied fundraising was any factor in the decision, saying the debates were accepted because they provide an opportunity for real-time contrasts.
Howard Wolfson, communications director for Sen. Clinton, told reporters today that the campaign had approved the debates to give voters a chance to see the candidates “side by side.” He said while there had been a number of Democratic debates, only one was one-on-one, hosted by CNN last week in Hollywood.
Mr. Wolfson said that since the candidates opted out of an Aug. 14 Nevada debate and a Sept. 23 debate to be hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and aired by Fox, both candidates had done long interviews on Fox News Channel.
“My understanding is that Sen. Obama has appeared on Fox more than once, and we have appeared on Fox,” he said. “It gives an opportunity for [voters] to see the candidates and it makes sense in terms of viewership.”
The Fox debate would be Feb. 11, the night before primaries in Washington, D.C., Virginia and Maryland. Mr. Wolfson said the debate would be seen on the Washington, D.C., Fox station, WTTG-TV. It wasn’t immediately clear if the debate would air live on the local station or subsequently.
The other debates the Clinton camp approved were one this Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” with George Stephanopoulos; a Feb. 27 debate in Ohio sponsored by CNN and the Ohio Democratic Party; and a Feb. 28 debate in Houston sponsored by MSNBC and featuring Chris Matthews.
1:35: Updated fourth paragraph


  1. I think Hillary Clinton can make a difference in America. She is the only one running that has ever done anything for middle class people. (or poor) I hope the middle class and poor will get out and vote for her, so she can continue to help America. She also is a great speaker and best qualified to handle forgein affairs.

  2. The issue here is that we need to have Obama out there more than ever before. We need less debate and more time to campaign. Time is running out.. . This is a waste of time. I think this is a trick to keep Obama away from the voters. We all know that one debate a week requires two days of preparation and that means that Obama will have no more time to campaign.
    The fact is that the more voters got a chance to see Obama campaigning and firing up the crowd, the more votes he tends to get.
    Please do not fall for that — this is just another way to derail Obama off this message and to suppress this momentum

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