By common consent, the three Obama-McCain campaign debates will be on the free-flowing and loosey-goosey side, but McCain camp advisers have refused to let Snowmoose Squareglasses debate the wily, free-associating, fork-tongued Joe Biden this way. Whoa, guys…our girl’s not good enough at this stuff! Different rules!
Hence the Vice-Presidential debates, set for 10.2, will be much, much simpler with shorter question-and-answer segments than those for the presidential nominees, and with much less opportunity for free and footloose moves, boxing, fencing and tap-dancing between Biden and Sarah Palin.
As the N.Y. Times Patrick Healy put it today, “McCain advisers said they had been concerned that a loose format could leave Ms. Palin, a relatively inexperienced debater, at a disadvantage and largely on the defensive.”
The first Obama-McCain debate will happen on Friday, 9.26, in Mississippi.
The Commission on Presidential Debates “had proposed that the first debate be on economic issues, and the third on foreign policy — in part, people involved in the process said, because the first debate is usually the most watched, and many voters rank the economy as their top concern.
But Obama “successfully sought to flip the proposed topics for the first and third debates, so foreign policy is now coming first and economic and other domestic issues come last.
“There is a second debate, in the format of a town hall meeting, in which the candidates will sit on director’s chairs and take questions from the audience and internet users on any topic.”