(CNN) –On the anniversary of the September 11 attacks, presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama each take the stage to discuss service and civic engagement in a forum at Columbia University.
What do you think of their ideas? How does the role of service determine what kind of nation we live in? What does national service mean to you?
Along with CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley, CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider, CNN Political Analyst Roland Martin, and Republican strategist Bay Buchanan, thousands of you weighed in.
Click "comments" below for a look at the entire conversation.
We can afford Obama and his programs once we stop spending 10 billion dollars a month in Iraq.
Both candidates have done a good job of talking about public and non-profit based srvice to this country, the difference is Obama has walked the walk. What , afterhis military sevice has john mccain done in the private or non-profit service areas? And what is his stance on taking care of our military after they come home or move back in to the private secter. Obama has shown what he brings to the table, McCain would go on in the same vein that we do now. Our responsibility to these brave men and women does not stop when they leave the military
vision, vision, vision.....that is what we need....
Obama is doing a WONDERFUL job tonight!! He is laying out his plans effectively and thoughtfully. He is giving us specifics and straight answers.
I hate to burst everyone's bubble but John Kennedy got us into the Viet Nam war...
Obama is speaking very thoughtfully, but what I am hearing is a whole lot of talk about government expansion. To some, this may be welcome. To others, this is a major red flag.
Look, we need a Democrat in the white house for a while. We have been focused on foreign affairs for the last 8 years, what say we focus on the good ole' USA for a while, get your bridges and roads in shape, help our own people and make this place worth living in again.
Is it just me or is the GOP trying to pull one over on the "blue collar" Americans. Its funny that they dressed up all of Bush-Cheney ideals in a dress and now its considered change?! It took me awhile to support Barack Obama, but as a former Hilary supporter its insulting that the GOP thinks that nominating a female VP is going to sway my vote! This election is between John McCain and Barack Obama-–Wake up America and lets wipe the lipstick off of the McCain campaign.
I have so much respect for Mr. Obama. Helping others who may not have the strength to help themselves is a great blessing on both sides. I went back to teach at the inner-city school I attended as a child. The housing project where I grew up is directly across the street from the school. My students tell me how bad it is living there now. When I tell students I grew up over there, they are in disbelief. Then, they see there is hope. I am rewarded daily when I see my children strive and rise to meet the high expectations. God saw fit to bless me with a wonderful single mom, who really worked hard to raise my siblings and I. I'm blessed and fortunate to be able to be of service to my students and their families.
To Bill Schneider and Candy Crowley;
Of course Senator Obama feels much more at ease here;
He's not being challenged to THINK; he can just talk, talk, talk without being questioned or the content of his responses being challenged.
That's the best thing for him; the commentators are doing a miserable job.
Obama did not answer the question about why he chose not to serve in the military. If he did not want to join the military, then how can he inspire others to do it. Obama made a mistake in saying that he once thought of serving in the military because it makes him look less patriotic than McCain.
Mr Obama: To acknowledge the number of people in this country who have no health insurance, and to do NOTHING about it is disgusting and unacceptable. Only third world countries don't have the resources to administer healthcare to their citizens! First we need to determine who is being enriched by the current system; the heads of health insurance companies are paid an obscene amount of money; lawyers have positioned themselves in the mix(little that is good can come from this); many of the insurance companies are non-profit and yet pay millions to their officers(obviously disposing of profits); patients need to be screened for wasting the system's money for lack of care and knowledge of good health; etc . . . . I believe that the Federal Government cannot administer a satisfactory system of health care! It must be organized in small enough regions to be policed by the Federal Government, but administered by states. Whatever system is proposed for universal health coverage needs to be protected from rape by the people who are covered, in order for it to survive without becoming a burden to taxpayers.
You know, it's real nice to actually hear someone explain their answer instead of giving me some quick line that they don't know what it means or talk like they have no clue.
I've had to live with a president who does that for 4 years now!
Hey bill Schneider, what exactly has obama laid out in the way of a program except change? what will he change? from what to what?
1045 I enlisted in the USMC. When did the obama enlist? in which branch?
What has he ever done for his country?
JFK wouldn't have supported REVERSE DISCRIMINATION, BAMA!
Why are you always trying to sell Palin? Is it because you know we aren't buying her?
Roland, I agree with David. Obama "learned something" alright, how to lay it on thicker and heavier as he goes along. He's jsut to smooth for my liking And all has answers are, "government, government, government". That's just too much!
Roland is so jaded.
I was waching Obama and I don't believe his ready to be president .
No I do not support specific tax for the military. I do not support Obama at all.
I love this live blogging. Why don't we do this more often?
Military service is regarded as unique in that we who serve swear an oath to protect and defend our country. And that's what we do. It's our mission. We serve our nation proudly.
Those who contribute public volunteer service don't swear an oath to protect and defend our country.
That's the difference. McCain's been there....Palin's son is being deployed. McCain and Palin both know (will know) the stresses that go with having a child in a combat zone. Unless you have that perspective, it's truly difficult to understand what it's all about....
This is why Obama wont debate McCain 1 on 1.
I'm not real experienced in politics and stuff but it seems weird to me that the McCain people wouldn't let anyone ask Sarah Palin questions when she was out with John McCain. Then they had to get her all prepared and stuff for one interview. If she's so ready to lead, why couldn't she just be like the other candidates and get out there and answer questions from reporters and people, like all the others?
When Obama talks, he inspires me. He makes me want to go out into my community and join an organization to help in some way to make things better right where I live. I truly believe that if he is elected, things will change. People will start to pull together and community service will go through the roof. I definitely think he can accomplish what he wants to. He is a very inspiring man.
I disagree with Bay. Everytime a canadate goes out on the media circle, they have an oppurtunity to either keep, gain, or lose a vote. Right now, I believe that Obama, with his thoughtful ideas and specific comments, he is earning some votes.