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. MD Democrat

    Started getting a bit off track there....this is supposed to be about service and I'm hearing the same thing I hear when he's out with Palin

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  2. Chris

    seduced by the all the attention I'm sure...

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  3. yeah right

    I could respect him running against Congress and Washington if he would acknowledge is individual failures. Stop playing victim

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  4. Obama 08: White, 60 yr old female

    Is CNN going to post the two candidate's proposals for service as Mark Halperin on The Page has. They are very revealing about the thoughtfulness and thoroughness Obama has put into his policy while McCain's looks like a brainstorming exercise.

    To do so is really giving the voters a chance to read for themselves much like Anderson Cooper showing the tax comaprison on his show last night. Voters don't always have to be spoonfed and given pundits interpretations!!

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  5. Lisa in Ga

    What I want to talk about .. is the reason why this rate is so close is because of RACE....

    People know that McCain and Sarah plan on overturning Roe vs Wade

    People know that they are for they Rich getting richer....

    People if you really look at the differences the choice is clear... McCain and Palin will not only be like Bush... they will be WORSE than Bush.... but what do u expect from from those who voted him in twice....

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  6. Bill Schneider

    McCain is trying to use his nearly 30 years in Washington to his advantage, saying his experience means he knows how to reform it. It's a bit of complicated argument, but it just might work.

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  7. Tina

    I have one thing to say about Palin and the recent, dramatic Republican decision to bring this beauty queen with 1 sheet paper thin experience in foreign policy, law and international strategy...to the ticket:

    if it looks like a duck, and it quacks like a duck...it IS a duck.

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  8. Wake up People

    McCain wants to re open the draft!!! Enough said

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  9. Christina

    You guys are crazy if you believe that this woman was not scritped and trained on every question. For goodness sakes, McCain's campaign has made it known that they put her through tutorial sessions on information and knowledge she should already know as a vice presidential candidate. Are you calling this someone who is ready to lead? What will happen to America if something happens to McCain and we are stuck with someone who was taught foreign policy issues in two months and has never met a foreign leader?

    It is so sad that as Americans we cannot learn form our own mistakes! We are considering voting for a man who chooses a woman not because he feels she is prepared, but as a tatical measure to win an election. We all know that is what is going on and we accept it. It is time for the American people to stand up and let Washington know that we will no longer accept deceit and trickery, and we want soemone who has the American peoplelbest interest at heart.

    Look at the state of our nation internally and externally. This election is not a high school football game, its not about choosing sides and rooting for your team. Let's put ourselves first America, and see McCain's choice for what it is. I am not asking Republicans to vote for Obama, because we have the right to choose who we support. All I'm asking is that you hold McCain responsible for his political tactics. America's future is to shaky to be playing political games.

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  10. Lizzie

    Let's give it a chance.

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  11. Martin Tease

    By the way,

    isn't comparing,c contrasting and trying to quantify one's choice of serving this country the idea and very essence of elitism.

    You serve the military, I work in the community, they are elected in office, one works his way up to CEO of non profit or public business, were does one draw the line.

    The issue should not be that McCain's military records is better than Obama's who did something utterly different. Palin being a mayor versus Biden being a Senator for 30 years.

    The principle factor that we should be debating are the issues. their particular take on them, any contradictions with them and ultimately who is the best choice to return this country to the greatness we have endured in differing times unlike those we are in now.

    September 11, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  12. Donald Stuckey

    McCain has is giving the American people more empty rhetoric. As I said before, he had three decades ago something about it.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  13. Kim-Canada

    This seems to be playing out as a venue for more rhetoric. I was hoping for more honesty.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  14. Bev

    McCain says he knows how to fix Congress. Please ask the follow-up question: "Senator, If you know how to fix it, why haven't you? And what is you plan to fix it?"

    For the love of God, please, PLEASE - follow up questions!!!

    Good heavens, where's Tim Russert when we need him.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  15. rap

    No Bill, the MAc is trying to contrast so that CNN and the best political team can report thus.

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

    Maybe Obama and McCain should run against each other!

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  17. David

    Sue, are you kidding me? McCain is self serving? Obama has NO EXPERIENCE TO LEAD OUR COUNTRY. But yet, he preaches CHANGE and that he is the one to turn our country around. He is self serving! Why else would he have denounced Hillary Clinton over the last 6 months. Hillary was the BEST choice for our president...but yet, we find Obama – who has no experience and can offer no resolution to many topics such as immigration, foreign policy and alternative fuel sources running for the office. Who is self serving? Give me a break!

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  18. Say No to McCain

    Running against Bush Bill? McCain is on the ticket not Bush!! Obama is against McCain, please get it right.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  19. T-Ruff

    J.McCain, tries so hard to trash congress and the established government without really telling the truth about the President and his short comings.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  20. Gloria Knox

    Wolf Blitzer needs a replacement–he seems to dislike women.
    He exagerates anything that HE feels is detremental to Obama.
    CNN commentators are Political Activists NOT reporters–
    they destroyed Hiliary Clinton who was by a far "head and shoulders" above Obama. The only thing Bill Clinton should do for Obama as a result of the luncheeon – insist on the removal of Biden and replace him with Hllary. . Now you are trying to destry Govenor Palin.
    Your Cable chanel has a Socialist agenda and together with Obama a Global agenda replacing the government we in the United States have enjoyed.
    Stop your your attempting to demean Sarah Palin, she is an excellent candidate.
    CNN has some serious problems concerning the opinions of your commentators.

    Gloria Knox
    Sarasota Florida.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  21. Ellen

    I can't believe we are blogging with Bay Buchanan and Bill Schneider!! Hello to you both, I watch you all the time!

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  22. Christopher Mathis

    MCSame speak about congress as if he hasn't been t here for over two decades.

    And did he refuse any pay raises that "they" voted for?

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  23. James Cox

    On message????? yea if he's at one of his rallies (with fewer people without Palin.)

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  24. S

    When will people realize that in order to change Washington, you have to get people to change their way of thinking. When you talk about government, you are talking about the people of the united states. Government does not consist of the few elitists in Washington. You have to start at the foundation of the country, which is its people. Barack does that, not McCain. McCain wants to reach over your head to get things done. I honestly do not think that he is a man of the people.

    September 11, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  25. tickerroland

    Why in the world are we talking as if Americans – right now – don't have citizen patrols, community civic clubs, are members of non-profit organizers, fraternities, sororities, and groups that are focused on service?

    To be honest, I don't get this forum tonight.

    In fact, here we are talking about service in politics, but then we turn right around and say, "Term limits!"

    How can we, on one hand, rip politicians every day for being politicians, but sit here tonight and try to praise them for their service – as politicians?! Aren't we being hypocrites?

    Guys, my mom and dad were community organizers. They got sick and tired of the drugs, crime and sorry schools, and did something about it.

    I was there to help put the flyers out, knock yard signs in the ground, and cook dinner for my siblings because my parents were at late night civic club meetings in Houston's Clinton Park.

    But this conversation tonight – already – seems as if the folks on that stage are detached from the nitty gritty work that is done day in and day out.

    I'm just trying to be honest here. Maybe they will stop talking about service in such lofty terms.

    If so, I'll be happy. Because right now, it seems all touchy and cozy.

    September 11, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
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