September 11th, 2008
08:20 PM ET
6 years ago

Live-blogging with The Best Political Team

Weigh in with CNN's analysts and contributors.
Weigh in with CNN's analysts and contributors.

(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.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (4,056 Responses)
  1. Obama 08: White, 60 yr old female

    FiFth time: If you want to see each candidate's policy for national service they are both posted on Mark Halperin's The POage. I wish CNN would make these available to voters who want to be informed.

    The difference in thoroughness and thoughtfulness is very revealing.

    September 11, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  2. California Vet

    I'm a vet.....I should be running for POTUS. I have the qualifications!

    September 11, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  3. Horace

    McCain just danced around the question on the disproportion of minorities and low-income people in the military. He didn't answer the question.

    September 11, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  4. Joe Mallott

    Gawd! Do they call this drivel journalism? Let's ask nMcCain a real question ....likehow he plans to wet start the economy!

    September 11, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  5. Donald Stuckey

    Yeah right makes a good point why did McCain not support the new G.I. Bill.

    September 11, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  6. rich

    why do we continue to listen to this rhetoric about how mccain is the man to change washington when hes been there for 30 YEARS and until someone came along with a message of change, he has done absolutely NOTHING to change anything so far. thats why he lost(by far) 8 years ago to bush in the primaries, and yet here he is, running for the office of president of the UNITED states of america, running on his opponents platform of change. how ironic...

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  7. vanessa rebecchi

    I agree with Roland when he says that McCain is disconnected with day to day lives. example, " corporations and jobs should give employees time off to volunteer" ha! like that would ever happen

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  8. Vanessa

    I don't think McCain sounds as good as he did at Saddleback. He sounds old and tired a bit. I can already see Obama winning this forum.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  9. V from Milwaukee

    I find it laughable that the republicans even bothered to show up to this event in lew of what Palin said about community organizers...oh wait, to them the only service is military service right?

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  10. Greg FL.

    David, McCain was proud he supported Bush even more then his Republican coleages. He stated how proud he was. I think that speaks to his judgement and it makes his case for change tough to swallow. He on one hand is saying how bad the current admin is and needs change, but on the other he helped create it.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  11. ken

    has anyone brought up the fact that a service person had to stop mccain and put a flag pin on him. Country first? of all days that someone who is running for the highest office needs to be reminded how much the flag means. The service person felt so strongly about the need for mc cain to have pride in the flag , he took the pin from his jacket and pinned mccain. Had this happened to obama it would have made more headlines than the palin interview.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  12. Clara Kansas City, MO

    The 'change' mantra from McCain is hysterical. I believe his message of change means "Change the topic!"

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  13. G Smith

    Please ask Sen McCain why he and other heaped ridicule and sarcasm on Sen. Obama's choice to begin community service with faith-based charities among America's poorest when he first grafuated from Columbia University. ??

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  14. Carolyn

    Palin didn't even know what the Bush Doctrine was!!

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  15. Sportsbabe

    Laura,
    You and Roland can "out-bias" each other. I'm biased too, but based on the facts.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  16. Thed Weller

    Wasn't he against the last GI bill? Something like, if we reward the GI's to well, they won't Re-up and re-enlist? Did I miss something?

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  17. Bev

    Yo, Bill – slip Judy a question for us! Just sneak up to the stage, nobody will notice ...

    "Senator McCain, why have RNC and your pick for VP sneered at Senator Obama's own public service."

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  18. Hewitt Spain

    Palin absolutely dropped the ball on the first part of her interview with Charlie Gibson. She got quite flustered at some of the questions he was asking, and let's be honest, they were fair questions. Look for Biden to wipe the floor with her at their debate unless she somehow manages to make him say something he shouldn't.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  19. sue

    Of course average americans volunteer more than the rich-the image will be forever with us-of mccain & bush "eating bday cake" while new orleans was sinking

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  20. Linda

    I want to know if McCain plans to keep the commission corps when he wins?

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  21. DREW79

    I think there is plenty of oppurtunity to recruit military. They definately dont need to be attacking our children. A lot of recruiters are very pushy. I also think if we were in less wars we would need less military.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  22. Viewer, PA

    Laura, Boston:

    Roland is just asking questions to make people think. This is the role of the media. I personally wish more reporters would do this crucial part of their job.

    But regardless, before you criticize anyone for bias, also ask yourself if Brit Hume makes you angry for interjecting his bias against Obama.

    Thanks.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  23. Paul

    McCain scares me in regards to the military. I believe he will institute a military draft when he and Palin decide to go to war with Russia.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  24. In Pursuit of Facts About The Candidates, No Sound Bites

    How can the man who has ridiculed "community service" really then sit and talk about service. Is the army the only service he believes there is. I acknowledge that he has done one of the most honourable things. But to ridicule another mans worth and time is hypocritical. I am not impressed by his answer.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  25. Bill Schneider

    McCain is doing well so far - insomuch as a candidate can be judged in a non-political forum such as this.

    But I think he needs to flesh out some of his statements a bit more. He said he will reform Washington, but didn't really get to how he will do it.

    And when it came to Katrina, he praised the private sector's reaction. But he's running to be head of the public sector. He needs to explain how he would improve the government's response to future natural disasters.

    September 11, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
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