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Nell Lancaster

Kerry dealt with questions about campaign contributions by embracing the fact that he and Paul Wellstone were the two principal sponsors of the "Clean Elections" legislation at the federal level.

Thanks for this; anything that will kindle some enthusiasm for Kerry is helpful, and I hadn't realized that he was a major supporter of public financing.

I think this should be a major push of the Kerry campaign. Not only to help preserve the progress in Arizona, as you noted, but to energize Dean supporters across the country for the general.

Crab Nebula

If Bush does not debate Kerry at all, he hands Kerry a big club: "Why Is George Bush Ducking John Kerry"? Can't see how that would play to Bush's advantage.

And TV news might respond to this scenario with extra coverage and one-on-one interviews, perhaps back-to-back - another relative Kerry strength.

My guess would be that there will be just two debates, and Bush stays stubbornly, narrowly on-message, and questioners will be afraid to challenge him. His strategy will not be to win, but will be to avoid mistakes and achieve a tie.

Bush probably won't be able to count on Kerry wearing funny makeup or acting eggheadedly condescending.

Kevin Hayden

The GOP convention got set so late in the season precisely to limit the debates. There will be two, in October, and Nader will be included (which could backfire on Bush).

By releasing dirt on Kerry the day before each debate, Rove will try to keep Kerry off guard with the revelations dominating the debates. That, and the capture of OBL (thus negating Kerry's strength on defense issues) are the only way I can fathom these debates occurring.

Unless Bush is 'too busy' launching a new military action.


Bush tried to get out of the debates in 2000, but that strategy didn't last a week.

And Rove used the debates to win the election. When Bush said his experience in crisis was limited to checking out burning brush in Texas, Gore said, yeah, been there, saw that, with Jamie Whitten.

The next day we learn Gore had seen burning brush in Texas, but not with Whitten. Gore, you see was A LIAR. Throw in one butterfly ballot, and the result is the current disaster.

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