[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/04/art.mccaindeb.ap.jpg caption="McCain has raised the prospect of town halls with Obama before."] BATON ROUGE, Louisiana (CNN) - John McCain on Wednesday challenged Barack Obama to join him for a series of town-hall debates.
Calling for "no process questions from reporters" and "no spin rooms," the presumptive Republican presidential nominee proposed one debate a week from now until the Democratic party convention in August.
McCain cited a 1963 agreement between John F. Kennedy and Barry Goldwater to hold such debates as part of the 1964 election campaign. Kennedy was assassinated before the campaign began.
"What a welcome change it would be were presidential candidates in our time to treat each other and the people they seek to lead with respect and courtesy as they discussed the great issues of the day, without the empty sound bites and media-filtered exchanges that dominate our elections," McCain said in a letter to Obama released by McCain's campaign.
McCain suggested he and his rival travel together to the first one as a symbolic gesture.
He joked that his campaign would appreciate the budget savings. Obama has raised tens of millions of dollars more than McCain for his White House run.
The Obama campaign has not yet issued a response to McCain's proposal, though when McCain raised the prospect last month, the Illinois senator called it a "great idea."