January 11th, 2008
03:45 PM ET
3 years ago

Blitzer: What would you ask the Democrats in South Carolina?

 Weigh in on the South Carolina Democratic debate.
Weigh in on the South Carolina Democratic debate.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - I am going to be hosting a Democratic presidential debate on Monday, January 21, in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The CNN debate will be co-sponsored with the Congressional Black Caucus Institute. Suzanne Malveaux and Joe Johns will be joining me in the questioning. All of us are really looking forward to this debate which coincides with Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in the United States.

It comes just before the Democratic primary in South Carolina on Saturday, January 26. Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards all have respective strengths and weaknesses in that state. Hopefully, we will be able to learn more about these three candidates during that forum, which airs at 8 p.m. ET on CNN. The two earlier Democratic debates I moderated – in New Hampshire in early June and in Nevada in November – included a lot more candidates. Several of them, as you know, have dropped out. This one should be more manageable.

There are so many questions all of us have about the candidates. I have my ideas, and am excited, but l really want to hear from you - I would love your input. Let me know what you would ask these Democratic candidates if you had the chance. This race for the White House is at a pivotal point for the Democrats and the Republicans. And the stakes for the nation are very high. Thanks in advance.

–CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer

Filed under: South Carolina • Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (2,911 Responses)
  1. Brendan

    Often people lose sight of their family in the midst of their demanding jobs. All of the candidates seem to have good relationships with their family. Yet how much quality time does Edwards, Obama, Clinton, Kucinich, and any other remaining candidates actually spend with their families every year.

    January 14, 2008 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  2. Mara

    Obama:

    In the recent New Hampshire debate, when Senator Clinton said that your NH campaign chairman is a lobbyist., you could be heard saying, "that's not true – that's not true."

    The facts are, he IS a lobbyist. Were you knowingly lying, or do you just have no idea about the people you hire?

    January 14, 2008 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  3. Alice

    Mr. Blitzer,

    Thank you for your professional reporting on political issues. It is a pleasure to watch you anchor events and the Situation Room.

    Please ask the 3 Democratic front-runners (Clinton, Edwards, and Obama) to explain their position regarding illegal immigration. Specifically, what would they do to secure the border and deal with the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States? This seems to be an issue that the Democrats do not want to talk about. I am a registered Democrat, and I do not know where the Democratic candidates specifically stand on this issue.

    Thank you for your time and keep up the great work!!

    Alice

    January 14, 2008 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  4. c jones

    What will you do about normalizing relations with Cuba? Isn't it about high time??

    January 14, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  5. inessa

    POSITION ON AFFIRMATIVE ACTION

    FAVORED SUPREME COURT JUSTICE. WHY?

    OBAMA'S RELATIONSHIP WITH REV. WRIGHT AND THE AFRO CENTRIC TRINITY CHURCH. WOULD THIS CREATE PROBLEMS IN THE GENERAL ELECTION FROM REPUBLICANS.

    TO MR. OBAMA:
    ON HEALTH INSURANCE: FOR THE UNEMPLOYED POOR: MEDICAID;
    THE WORKING MIDDLE CLASS WILL AFFORD TO PAY FOR IT.
    WHAT HAPPENS TO THOSE WHO DO NOT QUALIFY FOR MEDICAID BUT CANNOT AFFORD TO BUY INSURANCE. ARE THOSE "THE WORKING POOR"?
    WHAT HAPPENS TO THEM?

    TO ALL:
    WHY DOES OBAMA GET SO MUCH POSITIVE PRESS
    HILLARY LESS SO
    EDWARDS MARGINALIZED OR IGNORED.
    MCCAIN WITH LOWER POLLS THAN EDWARDS HAD MORE PRESS COVERAGE.

    TO; MRS CLINTON, MR. OBAMA AND MR. BLITZER:
    IF THEY. OR A MEMBER OF THEIR FAMILY WERE INJURED BECAUSE OF THE POSSIBLE NEGLIGENCE OF A MANUFACTURER, A HOSPITAL OR A DOCTOR, WILL THEY CONSIDER RETAINING A TRIAL LAWYER, OR THEY WOULD SAY :]
    EVERYONE MAKES MISTAKES, FORGET ABOUT IT.

    January 14, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  6. Jon Owings

    It's amnesty for illegal aliens, stupid. Ask the democratic candidates what their plans are, we know they are supposed to be pro-amnesty but let's hear it. Not talking about makes it seem a non-issue when it is very important to most legitimate Americans.

    January 14, 2008 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  7. Nolan Stripling

    Wolf, considering your broad international audience, I would propose that you consider asking the candidates the following question in the forthcoming debate...

    "With millions of American civilians living and working abroad, they represent a segment of the US population who daily face the brunt of 'Anti-American' sentiment throughout the world that has become so prevelant during the Bush Administration.

    By and large, each of these Americans are in reality, 'Ambassadors' of this great country. Despite the anomosity they frequently encounter, they do their very best to explain to foreigners in their host countries, the real values that American's pocess, as we try and defend the policies of our government and represent our country in a positive and constructive fashion.

    The constantly falling US Dollar has increasingly imposed a severe financial hardship on this particular group of Americans, with little notice or acknowledgement of such, from either members of Congress or the Bush Administration. Together, this group make up a significant voting block and are becoming far politically active and better organized ahead of this years forthcoming national election.

    If you are elected President, what action will you take to recognize their personal contribution to our overall economy and image abroad and provide them with some degree of protection or tax relief to insure that this particular group of Americans are no longer forgotten? "

    Keep up the good work and it just doesn't get any better than you and 'Late Edition'.!!

    An American in Munich

    January 14, 2008 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  8. Jeff Tautges

    Wolf,
    Some of the Republican candidates advocate eliminating the income tax and abolishing the IRS. Could you ask each of the Democratic candidates why they think this would be a bad idea, (or a good one if they think so).

    January 14, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  9. Tanya

    Question for all the candidates: There are many illegal immigrants that came to this country as children with their parents and have grown up here with no connection to the country that they came from. What is your proposal to address the legal status of these people that came to the United States of America, not by choice and now identify themselves as "American" because it is the only country they have ever known?

    January 14, 2008 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  10. Susan

    Please ask the candidates what they would do the next time China refuses to allow any of our ships into their ports?

    Thank you

    January 14, 2008 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  11. MN Matt

    To all of the candidates: In the spirit of enhancing the public's ability to make an informed choice, why have you not been more vocal about the exclusion of Mike Gravel and Dennis Kucinich in other debates. How can the American public trust you to act in their best interests when you won't put your neck out for democracy, now?

    Wolf, I am presupposing that the integrity of CNN will continue, with an invitation to both Dennis and Mike.

    January 14, 2008 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  12. Andre Hartford, CT

    Question for Hillary:

    A recent polls states that 57% of Americans over age 21 admit to having tried marijuana atleast once. Common sense tell us that some people have but wont admit to it. Senator Obama and former Senator Edwards have both candidly admitted to having tried marijuana in their youth. Senator Clinton have you ever smoked marijuana? (I do mean inhaling as well!!!)

    January 14, 2008 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  13. Nina Palmer

    I would like to know how all the candiates feel about changing the primarys in each state and have everyone vote at the same time, and get rid of the electroial collage and bring back the popular vote?

    January 14, 2008 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  14. Storm Reyes

    As a Native American, Puyallup Tribe, I'm particularly concerned about the candidates positions related to Indian nations and issues. Will they be partners or overseers? Will they support our self-determination efforts or as Bush as done, try and 'assimilate' us?

    January 14, 2008 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  15. Laura

    Some candidates have claimed to feminists and/or deeply concerned with women's issues. As president, would you work with Congress for the ratification of CEDAW? Additionally would you work for the execution of its principles in the United States?

    January 14, 2008 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  16. symphonyofdissent

    It has been deeply troubling to see Global Warming and our energy crisis rarely brought up in the Republican or Democratic debates. With Iowa out of the way, it will be interesting to see if candidates will still be as adamant of their support for corn Ethanol. What will they do to transform our economy into a green one that will provide high quality and environment preserving jobs. How do they plan to reduce our oil dependence without destroying precious wildlife reservations in Alaska, and what kind of painful concessions do they foresee the American people having to make to achieve this independence?

    January 14, 2008 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  17. Bruce D. Birch

    The government has got in a rut in the budget process. By this I mean that the mentality is spend all that is allocated in your budget so you may get more next year. Where is the incentive to save. I think that an incentive program should be in place that rewards those who come in under budget. maybe by increasing their budget by the amount they save added to the following year. Of course this makes no sense to the governments way of thinking ,they just tax more and spend more. The question would be as follows. "what incentive plan due you propose to gov't depts. to come in under budget? The Spend more so you can get more days are over and the American people expect better leadership in this area.

    January 14, 2008 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  18. Susan

    Please ask Hillary how she sees her agenda getting passed through Congress when Republicans hate her so much and will try to block anything she proposes.

    For Barack Obama – how would his presidency look different from HIllary's in working to bring about change he talks about.

    Thanks!
    Susan

    January 14, 2008 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  19. Dan from PA

    Another important question:

    Baring in mind that:

    -Many who watching you now are accutely aware of your past words, past actions, voting record, etc. AND
    -Most who are watchin you now are human B.S. detecters.

    Please, prioritize the following:

    -Personal Political Career
    -Special Interests Groups/Lobbiests
    -Average Joe Public – Worldwide
    -Average Joe Public – United States
    -Affiliated Party
    -Your Personal Family
    -Your Personal Religous Creedos

    Who is more important to you? No need to elaborate – I'm not interested in spin.
    Thank you.

    January 14, 2008 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  20. Yvonne Lassalle

    For the last twenty years, US foreign policy has focused overwhelmingly on the middle east and asia. In contrast, US relations with Latin America have been woefully negelected. I would like the candidates to detail (that is, offer a concrete example of) what would be their top foreign policy priority in Latin America.

    January 14, 2008 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  21. Dawn Woolcott

    Do you feel the presidential election process is working fine, or what would you do to correct it?

    I live in Washington State and feel I must sit idly by watching other states elect who should run for president. I won't have the chance to meet any candidate face to face. I tune in to the news shows and all I hear are commentators droning on and on about the latest poll or candidate soundbite, but never hear any useful information about what a candidate stands for. I'd like more comparison information.

    January 14, 2008 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  22. Amadu Bah

    Can u please ask the candidates whats are their plans for africa.i mean what can they do to help fight poverty,aids in africa.

    Note:In all the debates none of this candidates has been ask any question in regards to africa

    January 14, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  23. Valerie

    Many candidates claim foreign policy experience. Please ask the candidates to enumerate what foreign languages they speak fluently, and given their foreign policy claims, how their fluency might help the United States win hearts and minds abroad.

    January 14, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  24. Julie

    In looking over your career, what initiative would you organize or handle differently than you did? What lessons did you learn?

    January 14, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  25. Moya Harris

    I would ask all of the candidates, but more specifically Sen. Hillary Clinton, how they feel about the images that are portrayed by the media, most specifically, BET. I am concerned about the fact that Clinton has chosen to be seen with Bob Johnson, the founder and former owner of BET. BET has created a "visual crack" that denigrates Black women, and has made it acceptable to show black people as "pimps and hoes." Her support of him concerns me that she is not about the welfare of black women. Thank you for this opportunity!

    January 14, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
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