Debate Commission Says Debate Will Go on Friday

Sep 24, 2008  •  Post A Comment

The Commission on Presidential Debates notified television news organizations that it intends to move forward with plans for the first presidential debate on Friday.
That’s despite Republican candidate John McCain’s announcement Wednesday afternoon that he is suspending his campaign and ads and would like the debate postponed so he can focus on the country’s economic crisis on Capitol Hill, where a proposed bailout seems to be running into increasing pushback from elected officials.
Shortly after Sen. McCain’s announcement, Democratic candidate Barack Obama said he thinks the debate is particularly important at this time and he’s still committed to the event at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss.
The commission said, “The plans for this forum have been under way for more than a year and a half. The CPD’s mission is to provide a forum in which the American public has an opportunity to hear the leading candidates for the president of the United States debate the critical issues facing the nation. We believe the public will be well served by having all of the debates go forward as scheduled.”
All eyes now are on Sen. McCain, who is losing some of his advantage in a number of polls taken this week, for his next move.
The Republican candidate already had canceled his appearance on tonight’s “Late Show With David Letterman.”
A representative for “Late Show” said Keith Olbermann, the liberal host of “Countdown” on MSNBC, will fill the hole in the CBS show’s lineup left by the McCain cancellation.


  1. Iam a fourty three year old woman who has been voting democrat since I have been able to vote.This year however will be a different story.I think John McCain is doing the right thing by putting off a debate to take care of what I belive is a much more important issue,and if Obama was so concerned about forgien policies why wasn’t he in new york with all the world leaders.I just don’t get him! As far as Sara Palin goes I think its great to have someone in the white house who hasn’t been in washington her whole life she’s fresh, real and intelligent she will do great! thanks Rhonda from cincinati,oh

  2. 1. The crisis has been in the news since last week. McCain did not decide to “cancel” his campaign until after receiving a call from Obama. Obama suggested that they issue a joint statement re the economic crisis to help reduce any political or partisan influence that might obstruct the problem solving process. The day that McCain made the decision was also the very day that the newest election polls showed gains by Obama and losses by McCain. I wonder if his decision was more of a response to his falling number than to the crisis.
    McCain suggested the first debate be resheduled in place of the vice-pres debate. This would obviously give his team more time to prepare Palin who is being prepped on the economy and foreign policy, the two major areas of concern. (Watch her interview with Katie Couric.) Doesn’t it seem that maybe McCain is trying to buy his campaign time rather than “putting the country first?”
    2. Obama didn’t need to go to New York to meet foreign leaders because he has already met many of them through his congressional activities. Palin was there to meet foreign leaders because she has no foreign policy experience. For her it was a “meet and greet” opportunity.
    By the way, I am an Independent who has voted for both Republicans and Democrats. Given the results of the last 8 years (six of which had both a Republican President AND Congress)I don’t think the country can survive another Republican administration. (Please note that McCain voted in support of Bush policies more than 90% of the time.)

  3. If a candidate chooses to renege on a commitment such as these debates, the moderator should still ask the absent party the question prepared, and, with no one to answer, say to the attendent candidate: ” ‘X’ cedes the answer to you”.
    And the absent candidate will be given no redress by the National Elections Committee, and no special considerations in any subsequent debates.

  4. I agree with Frank, if a nominee makes a commitment to do something, he or she should fulfill that commitment, it is not right that the debate should be cancelled. McCain could have suspended his campaign last week, when the debate could have been rescheduled easier.

  5. This is a diversion on the part of Mc Cain. He is NOT on the Banking Committee so there was no reason for him to cancel the debate, what did he think he could accompolish? He just needed a break at his age to catch his breath. The debate should and will go on. It is a disgrace how the Republicans let this country go down the drain. Anyone who votes for another Republican in not puting America first. Greed and dishonest is what got us here under the Bush Administration. No accountablilty to anyone. This must change and I am a strong supporter of the Democratic nominee Senator Obamba. WE DEFINITELY NEED CHANGE IN WASHINGTON.

  6. So funny how people still fall for the Republican propaganda.

  7. McCain & Unable are panicking. There’s no other explanation for this most recent razzle dazzle on the part of their campaign. After listening to Palin’s interview with Katie Couric last night, I can certainly understand their desire to take that debate off the table.
    SNL should do a skit with Jon Lovitz playing the liar playing McCain. “Yeah, let’s suspend the campaign…. for the uh, FINANCIAL CRISIS! Yeah, that’s the ticket….then I’ll debate Obama during the scheduled VP debate and we’ll put Sarah in an unknown bunker somewhere until after the election. Yeah, that’s what we can do….that’s the ticket!”

  8. mccain at his age find it very hard to multi-task. and next president of the united states should be ALOT younger with newer and fresher idea about how to run these wonderful states. this STUNT will cost him the election. meanwhile, today, palin is somewhere being PROMPT for her debate coming up.
    i cannot financially stand another president like bush. “WE NEED A CHANGE!!!!!!”

  9. You can’t tell me that McCain isn’t in the Bush corner. Bush publically calls out McCain and Obama to come back to Washington. What a fabulous strategy. …Too bad it won’t work….The debates will go on!!!


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