(CNN) - John McCain and Barack Obama will share a stage next month, shortly before officially claiming their parties’ presidential nominations.
Both men will appear at a forum at Pastor Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church August 16 – and briefly appear on stage together before being interviewed separately by the “Purpose-Driven Life” author.
“This is a critical time for our nation and the American people deserve to hear both candidates speak from the heart – without interruption – in a civil and thoughtful format absent the partisan ‘gotcha’ questions that typically produce heat instead of light,” said Warren in a statement released Monday.
He added that he viewed both men as friends, but “they also know I will be raising questions… beyond what political reporters typically ask,” including issues like climate change, human rights, poverty and HIV/AIDS.
The Saddlebrook forum will be co-sponsored by Faith in Public Life, which co-organized a similar event with CNN at Messiah College in advance of the Pennsylvania primary.
Barack Obama’s campaign has made an ambitious effort – unprecedented from a Democratic White House hopeful - to reach religious voters this campaign cycle. "Senator Obama has consistently been one of our nation's leaders in addressing the role of faith in his own life and the lives of the American people,” said Josh Dubois, National Director of Religious Affairs for the Obama campaign. “He's looking forward to going back to Saddleback with his good friend Pastor Rick Warren - where he already spoke in 2006 - to talk about the role of values in solving some of our nation's most pressing challenges, and what all Americans can do to bridge religious divides and move our country forward.”
John McCain – whose campaign has worked hard to hold on to conservative Christians who typically vote Republican – got a major boost Sunday with the news that long-time critic James Dobson of Focus on the Family was weighing an endorsement of the presumptive Republican nominee.
“John McCain has a strong record of working on the issues that are important with pro-family voters,” said McCain spokesman Tucker Bounds of the Arizona senator’s decision to participate in the August forum. “Our campaign is working diligently to build even greater support for Senator McCain’s message of reform, prosperity and peace – so we are encouraged by signals of additional supporters and new venues for our conversation with voters.”
Mike, are there more than one mailing in? Each blog response from Mike are all different and in mixed statements. Try posting for one position or the other not just taking up space
i heard o bama made a quick drive thru iraq...... i wonder what kind of hamburger he picked up.....it's your money think about it//// true leadership....knows what they want.......with or without onions veep that
Can we PLEASE keep faith and politics separate?
If the candidates are meeting up with Rick Warren, I think it's only fair they meet up with Sam Harris too. He and Warren debated, after all.
To the few of you who are hanging on to the fact that there hasn't been a debate: OBAMA did agree to one on July 4th, McCain refused. So McCain proposed it but he's unwilling to compromise?
Calling someone a coward doesn't make your candidate brave, picking up a book and reading about him might. Typical Republican War Mongers. IT's all about bravery, Patriotism and flag pins!
Where's McCain's Flag Pin? unPatriotic.
There will be a debate soon, and when that happens, what will you bicker about then?
Did someone say stage? Alas! we shall know them by their fruit steps. Let the music begin.
Way to go Pastor Warren! Its about time we had a civil "debate" more or less. We currently have only the medias' view of these candidates and we all know who they are pushing. It will be refreshing to hear a true Christian question and answer forum. I look forward to hear some honest answers( even if the candidate does get to review the Q's before hand). Maybe the dialogue will bring out some truths we can hold to be self-evident. Thereby providing us with a more intelligent basis on which to cast or write-in our ONE VOTE.
Is there no such thing as separation of church and state anymore? Aren't we supposed to be at war with people whose church is the state? Why do these candidates keep throwing around church rhetoric, and now meeting at one for what we all know will be more of the same nonsense questions. I'm disappointed in Barack Obama. Mister Obama, where is your progressive platform that you ran on? Your movement of "change" which I and many others fell in love with had better remain, or I'll vote for Nader.
What's so "pro-family" about McCain? Last time I checked Obama was the true family man. Or maybe McCain gets more credit because he's been married twice?
I find it disturbing that the White House can now be bought by lots of money and having the Media behind you as Obama does.
Anything McCain has to says is made fun of or flipped to the curbside.
The media is behind Obama and it shows, I just hope no one believes everything you read in the news. Please God let people use their own head to decide and not listen to the one sided talk of the Media.
We run this country, not the Media and not all those special interest group paying for Obama.
McCain is not worthy to share any stage with Obama.
He had cancer. Is that the best you can do is bash a man rather than have an intelligent comment.
Kim in Oregon, How often has Obama flip flopped? I am happy that he has actually made the trip over seas to talk with our allies and generals on the ground over there. Although I am sure he will not listen to what the general had to say. He will come back home and talk about how he is going to pull the troops in 16 months regardless of what is happening over there.
Everybody seems to forget that Saddam and his sons were terrible people, they tortured, killed and raped thousands of Iraqis. But when it comes to Liberal causes they want America to help everybody but when it comes to military action they change their mind. How about saving Darfur? Once we have exhausted all diplomatic avenues and it comes down to sending in UN forces or our own troops the Liberals will turn on that cause and get mad that we are using force.
Maybe we should not have used military force against Hitler either. We should have just had long talks with him at one of the death camps.
I am sure if Obama was President during that time he would have sat down with him.
AGIAN CNN is showing its pro OBAMA side. 21 comments to date and all pro Obama except 1! As the polls show, Obama leads by six points. With that margin, one would expect the same margin when it comes to posting comments. It just shows how CNN is trying to influence the vote. As stated by CNN, comments are moderated by them and may appear in the blog. I guess they only want to show ones that favor Obama and slam McCain. Wake up America! and see through the bull that CNN is spewing!
Well you will live to see Obama has your next president Of the United state of America. I think coward is not appropriate to call Obama or any candidate will stand out to represent America . Before they debate both candiate have to accept their party nomination. So it is premature to use these words.
If it was easy I bet you would have run for the president of the united state. So, be mindful of what you say when you can't even stand to run for councilor of your area.
It very naive to judge perople by colour.
Can John McCain stay awake.
This old man he plays one, he play mix match on my thumb
"debate McCain "anytime, any place" and to do townhall meetings with McCain to answer real questions"
you must be joking??? to even imply that obama is afraid of debating john mccain is laughable, those 2 in a debate will be like watching an SNL skit-A COMPLETE JOKE!!!
and as for mccain's silly "townhall" meetings, do you have ANY idea WHERE mccain's holding his "townmeetings"??? try the conference rooms of large companies that are donating large sums of money to his campaign. so sorry, but they would NEVER let "real" americans like you and i in their building, forget asking questions!
if he had REAL townhall meetings, then obama would be there, wiping the floor with him, but as they are mccain's "townhall" meetings are a FARCE!!!!!!!!!!!!
Obama will fall like a brick and very soon. His career has been built on rhetoric and liberal views. America wake up!!
Why are they having these discussions at Messiah College, and being interviewed by a pastor? Are we now forcing religion into our country?
this is a good thing. The author of a "Purpose Driven Life" will come up with questions that go below the surface, beyond the "expected and anticipated" rhetoric. I for one will watch with great interest.
McCain folks – Are we sure the setting should be inside a church? After all the lies McCain tells I'm sure the clouds will roll back and lightning will come down from the heavens!
To all you Obama naysayers – One thing if any, regardless of your support – Please don't take him lightly or underestimate him as some-kind of naive politician. He is an intelligent, charismatic, confident, seasoned, thoughtful, & patriotic man of Integrity!
I read both essays and must say they are as different as day and night, McShame as usual is looking very foolish talking about Obama instead of issues..since Obama has been absent on his tour McShame has been just totally ridiculous...someone needs to tell him this is not making him look like a top candidate banging Obama all the time..he needs to talk about issues...however I guess that would not make much difference either as he knows nothing other than the war and doesn't know much about it..how could anyone vote for this man other than those that are quite racist such as the white male who said on cnn that " the only change he has seen a Black man make was with a can...how stupid.. Change will be made in America and the whole world will embrace it...not just Americans.
What is that look on Obama's face? Reminds me of his arrogance on the floor of the House during the State of the Union Address when Hillary and Teddy graciously greeted each other but Free Ride showed his arrogance to Hillary. However, Hillary was magnanimous in the face of his arrogance. As a Hillary Democrat, I plan to vote for John and the republican ticket.
yup... McCain who truly has no "from the heart" religious or spiritual affiliations is going to squirm uncontrollably.
Mike, TX "McCain should not appear anywhere with Obama except in a town-hall debate. No sense in legitamizing Obama."
Vote Nader "There are three other candidates. Were they invited? Did they decline? Did they accept? ** Nader/Gonzalez 2008 **"
Mike "the New York Times is going out of business..no longer relative"
Vig "Where's Hillary Clinton? She's the one who should be sharing a stage – not the sugar plum fairy."
Must be a full moon. The nut cases are out in force today.
And to "fallingInLine": When you say "Americans like me", you are using the term Americans quite loosely. Where do you come off calling Obama a coward – chiming in anonymously on the internet. That "coward" is going to be YOUR President come January.
I hope they both agree to stick to the issues, and stop attacking each other. We are disgusted with all of these attacks.
Legitimize Obama? He's the Democratic nominee for the President of the United States and polling ahead of McCain. He's already legit.