September 11th, 2008
08:20 PM ET
10 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. Philip Kulp - Eldersburg, MD

    John McCain had an opportunity to TRULY serve America in 2004 with a joint Kerry-McCain ticket, and he chose to stick with the Republican Party. So his current schtick is really hypocritical. I guess that's what makes him a Republican. And his current "ghost advertising" is pathetic and petty.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  2. Tori, FL

    Why is he trying to mix politics and religion? They don't mix.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  3. Adrienne

    McCain: Money where my mouth is... eeek! Time to side step. You are on your own!

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  4. Mary

    How on earth can John Mcain justify the attacks on Barack Obamas "community organizer" work and then act like he supports service? His convention made fun of community organizers.

    It seems as though he has squandered his years and years of opportunity to make change. He says he knows how to make change and that he knows how it works but in all this time he has failed to make change. Failed to change the system. He has compromised over and over and as he says..that is not change.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  5. Donald Stuckey

    I am glad that he thinks all of these programs to talk about our good thing, but why hasn't he formed to push legislation that would limit eight taxes on real award granted these volunteers would get. Also legislation that would increase the number of volunteers that would be allowed into these programs. And I have to hand why did John McCain opposed the new G.I. Bill.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  6. Michael

    Mr. Schnieder,
    You pros are spot on with your observations. I have yet to learn how Senator McCain's administration is going to lead us forward when it comes to service.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  7. CSpann

    Getting people to can't question their motives. Whether they are doing it for money, or paying it forward, or simply to improve your community....

    Service is service–the motive is individual to each person....

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  8. Lisa in Ga

    Bill, has McCain ever fully explained anything that he says?
    No, because he has a small clue... but no ideas.........

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  9. yeah right

    Candy I didn't know you where so easily impressed. Are you looking for another chance to call him Maverick

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  10. Shannon

    Did he just say community orginizers do better than the government?? Wow thats a huge turn around...

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  11. MLB

    He should have had that service conversation with his convention speakers!

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  12. L Sylv

    I hope this is okay to post on here, but am I the only one really scared of McCain/ Palin? She really is so extreme and wants to teach intelligent design in schools and to "pray the gay away." I think we'll have a theocracy based on her fundamentalist credentials (and I hear McCain was pressured to picking her–scary that they can do that now, I can only imagine what happens with a McCain/Palin administration)...

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  13. Laurie Sullivan

    McCain seems to be copying Barack's platform in a lot of issues.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  14. Paul


    Volunteering is when you do something without getting paid.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  15. David

    Is this evening simply desighned to allow senator McCain to go on about his service, or are we going to actualy learn somthing, anything, about how he intends to bring that element of service into our comunities. Senator Obama has actual experience doing the things that everybody seems to agree that we, as a country, need encourage. I would like to have sombody leading the country that has experience reaching out to our comunities and encouraging service. With no disrepect to the Senior Senator, I don't think that the soldiers at the Hanoi Hilton, the people that McCain worked with during a large part of his "service," are the target audience here.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  16. Travis

    If he applauds Obama's service plans, then why did he allow his VP candidate to belittle his work as a community organizer

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  17. ms_choice

    Ask McCain about community service workers? Isn't that service to our country?

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  18. Independent

    Service is not just the military. But it's important. Just don't expect the the Federal government to fund everything.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  19. gerry

    didn't palin make it a joke that obama was only a community organizer in her acc. speech. now he's talking how great it is.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  20. Concerned Citizen

    It is amazing that we have someone who is saying he is a Change Agent, and he supposedly is so comfortable in his skin as the candidate for the Republicans President, because, let's be clear, he will be the Republicans' President – that he seems so rehearsed in this forum tonight. He wants to show a human side which does not come off so easily. He has been a part of the administration for so many years as he likes to say, and Sarah said tonight that they are going to be different because she does not have years of politicial years in the White House, but he does. He is part of the problem. This race clearly is about Race – nothing else. The lipstick on a pig fight sounded so similar to "He whistled at a white woman", let"s lynch him. That's what happened yesterday. That is so similar to what happened years ago. It was perceived that Barack was disrespecting their "white" girl, and therefore he needed to be lynched. We need to wake up America. We will be back there if we allow this farce to continue. I was so sure that we had progressed farther along. As a white American, I am so embarrased at what is happening.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  21. DREW79

    my wife company will match any time you donate with money she volunteers for animal services

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  22. Pam Turkin

    I have already heard McCain mention expanding the military twice in 15 minutes. Let's hear how all those "Hockey" moms feel about serving up their sons when he decides to reinstate a draft!

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  23. Mike

    ye Candy..can you believe that? MCcain..loves war..and is very uneducated. You Candy, Schneider, you all are educated. This should be an insult to u.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  24. Onyeka

    Is it me or McCain doesn't sound like he knows what he is talking about?

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  25. combat veteran

    I am a combat veteran from the Vietnam War. I find it deploreable that John McCain exploits his POW experience and expects everyone to feel sorry and vote for him,especially us veterans and those couragously serving today. McCain violated the very code of conduct he and others swore to uphold. He sold his soul to the enemy by making false and derogatory statements about our great country. Most POWs in Vietnam were tortured. Most didn't blatantly and unpatriotically violate the sacred code. Mr. McCain should be ashamed of himself for exploiting his unforgiveable time collaborting with the enemy while he was a POW. This Vietnam Veteran will never vote for such a shameless person for the position of president and commander in chief of our great and wonderful military force.

    September 11, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
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