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. Janiece


    My husband and i talked about that too... every time the "service" word comes up he brings up the military... My husband is in the military so I respect that but what about the people of America that are serving our country by helping out their communities? Teachers, community organizers, preachers, etc.

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  2. Leah DiMarco, Texas

    Senator Obama has said many times on the stump that the failing teachers needs to get more training or they will need to go find a different job.

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  3. Andrea

    Where's Rudy tonight... he could be learning about community service...instead of making jokes about organizer??? what???

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  4. Christy

    Great job Obama, way to link yourself to the average Joe by bringing up your beginnings. I doubt the people who need to be watching this are but, way to jump on that.

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  5. Teddy

    This is true, Obama did have the opportunity to get into the money track, but instead he choose to serve. How ironic that McCain and Palin criticize Obama for being a community organizer, when the GOP focuses on "individual responsibility!!"

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  6. MLB

    Oh, Bay... Stop being such a Negative Nancy! I believe it was the RNC that cheered and cheered when it was announced that Todd Palin was a member of the SWU... This is a happy forum!

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  7. Juan G.


    And vouchers will improve schools for kids. Please, vouchers are an excuse from Republicans to segragate schools.

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  8. Hillary 2012

    Better not to talk about community organizer in my town different meaning
    I can’t say in the blog

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  9. Chris Heath

    Ok Bay, lets talk about education and how McCain wants to get rid of "bad teachers". He needs to clarify that. I teach a group of at risk students who don't do well on standardized tests, none the less, I go to work every day and bust my butt to get these kids motivated and to learn as best I can, and I do have some successes. Never the less, my students wont do will on those tests. Does that make me a bad teacher? Will I lose my job? Please clarify Sen. McCain…

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  10. Bill Boyer

    McCain...change from the inside?
    Obama...change from the naive side?

    Can't we just clone Teddy Roosevelt

    September 11, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  11. KofTX

    I'm voting for the smart guy this year. I think that's what makes most Democrats different from most Republicans. I don't say that to demean Republicans, I just mean that Bay's comments reflect a sense of admiration of McCain's political gamesmanship. I happen to think skirting around the issues to you benefit might be good for you but it robs the American people of making an informed decision.

    My point is, Republicans are USUALLY better at elections because the are consumed with WINNING....Democrats are USUALLY better leaders because the are consumed with GOVERNING.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  12. Eric walker

    @Buchanan, you can't talk your way into office? Maybe thats why the Pitbull has a muzzel.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  13. Bill Fredrickson

    Obama must be our next president, he has the plans and leadership skills to lead us back to the Great Nation we use to be.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  14. freedomanjel

    I don't think he wants to take on the unions. I think that what he plans for returning the country to work will please the unions, so that they won't be intimidated by the employment of any type of national service.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  15. Nathan Hale

    it doesn't matter Obama doesn't have a plan or experience if he wins, this could be like the fall of Rome.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  16. Patricia, Philadelphia, PA

    I am a recent college graduate and soon to be married. I wish Obama had been President then maybe instead of my fiancee and I having almost $100K in combined student loans, we would've worked in our communities and been rewarded with help to further educate ourselves. I would love to volunteer now, but I'm too busy working two jobs to pay off my education and the field that I'm in I can't afford to live on one job.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  17. Malinda

    Obama just stated that he wants to "restore mutual responsibility". I'd like to hear what he wants to "restore". I don't think he wants to "restore" anything, but wants to create more responsibility for the government take care of individuals' responsibilities, with "creeping socialism" that could eventually evolve into an American version of communism. So, what does Obama want to "restore"?

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  18. DHolmesNC

    Obama's message has been consistent throughout this campaign. The GOP has 'Changed' its message. I don't think that this is the 'Change' that Obama has been speaking of.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  19. matt

    Bay – Obama is proposing merit pay. Something McCain is against.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  20. Lisa in Ga

    Girlpower---... what exactly has McCain done besides sell out America.. being a POW?.... Inform me..please........

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  21. Mary

    Hello – he is at his old stomping grounds. That is why he is so relaxed and apparently he got to listen to McCain first.

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |

    This man make me so proud to be an American. he is so honest and up front and sensible. I am so glad to hear him speak again. I actually feel like my family has a chance. Go OBAMA!

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  23. White-African American Military BRAT

    The ONLY reason they picked Palin IS because Biden has a son who's going to Iraq as well. If McCain was going to have any chance he was going to have to find someone with a CHILD GOING to Iraq.

    So, the McCain camp when down the short (50 State) list of Govenors to find one with a child going to Iraq, as to not be out-done by the Dems.

    We'll have to see IF our Golden Boy Crist REALLY marries his 'fiance', now!!

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  24. Charles L. Shaw

    Folks all I can say from the top of my voice is...

    "I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore!"

    I'm not being fooled again, in the last thirty five years I have seen nothing from either of the major parties leadership other than bigger govenment, more laws restricting my freedom to choose my life style and more corruption. You speak of servantude?" These leaders have been doing nothing more in service other than serving themselves to the taxpayer money. They believe they are above the law. They have used our tax money to buy into privaite bussiness, the squander taxes in laws of proahbition, read our mail, and listen to our conversations, and bend or break the Republic's Constitutional laws.

    We need real leadership, NOW!

    I'm voting for Bob Barr and the Libertarian party this fall, join me in voting to have your freedom and Liberty returned to "we the people"!

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  25. Skip

    I don't think that education system fails our kids, we have a huge number of kids that do not want to participate in their own education, they want to be spoon fed the information and be "given" the knowledge without working for it... that is wrong. All children and young adults have the same opertunity for education. I came from a family that was two working parents, I got a job at 14, I have paid my way all the way through college and chose the military as my form of service...

    Yes, kids can afford college if they will study in high school they can get scholorships, grants, join the military who has GREAT education benefits, find a job that their employer pays for college...

    September 11, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
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