Final Presidential Debate tonight at 9PM ET / 6PM PT

The final presidential debate between Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain will take place tonight, Wednesday, October 15th, 2008 at 9pm eastern time, 6pm pacific time. The debate will be broadcast from Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York.

Watch the entire, unedited debate video here: Video: Final Presidential Debate from Hofstra University

We will have the entire, unedited debate video available here once it airs. Tonight’s format will be a traditional debate, however, each candidate will be seated at a table with the moderator for a much more personal appearance.

Time: 9PM ET / 6PM PT
Channel: CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, PBS, C-SPAN
Web Stream: Available below at 9PM ET / 6PM PT
Location: Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY
Length: 90 minutes
Format: Domestic/Foreign Policy Traditional Debate
Moderator: Bob Schieffer from CBS News

The Seattle Times has a dire outlook for voters hoping to get some specific details tonight:

WASHINGTON — Barack Obama and John McCain get their last chance Wednesday night to debate before tens of millions of voters about how they differ over remedies for the nation’s most vexing issues: the economy, health care and the future of Medicare and Social Security.

But few experts expect much new insight from their 90-minute debate at 6 p.m. Seattle time.

Not only does the format discourage talk about details, but also on the stump, on their Web sites and in their ads, the campaigns have shown little desire to get too precise.

“I’ve been very disappointed in both of them for the lack of vision,” said William Shughart, professor of economics at the University of Mississippi.

He and others don’t expect much depth.

“The debate format doesn’t lend itself to detail or complexity,” said Julian Zelizer, professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University.

Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., is the site of the third and final debate. McCain and Obama will answer questions from moderator Bob Schieffer of CBS.

The debate is to focus on domestic issues. It will include two-minute answers and then five minutes of discussion.

Schieffer says he’ll press for specifics, but historians say he’s got a tough job, because candidates tend to be vague, even in tough times.

“Franklin Roosevelt in the 1932 campaign was famously known for promising bold, persistent experimentation,” without being too specific, said John Geer, editor of the Journal of Politics.

The recent model for substantive campaigning was probably 1992, when candidates spent months debating the economy and offered books laying out their proposed programs.

Here’s to hoping Schieffer presses them both on details, never mind the so-called “debate rules” both campaigns may have agreed on.

Another view from CNN on whether it’s McCain’s last stand:

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The third and final presidential debate is shaping up to be a make-or-break appearance for both Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama, one of the last chances to get their message out to undecided voters.

The 90-minute face-off will undoubtedly focus on the economic crisis plaguing the country.

And unlike at the other two debates, the candidates will sit at a table facing one another.

CBS News’ Bob Schieffer, host of “Face the Nation,” will moderate the debate and told The Associated Press on Sunday that he will be seeking more on what each will bring to the presidency.

“By now, we’ve all heard their talking points,” he said. “We’ve heard the general outlines of what they are talking about. The time has come to be a little more specific.”

Schieffer said he’s not reluctant to get both candidates to stick to the question.

“It will not embarrass me, if they go off in a different direction, to say, ‘excuse me, could you focus on the question that I just asked?’ ” he said.

The veteran journalist last moderated a debate in the 2004 presidential race between President Bush and Sen. John Kerry.

A Hofstra University official said Tuesday that both candidates have made interesting demands.

Both campaigns, for example, have requested that an air-conditioning vent be placed above their candidate in order to prevent sweating, and the Nixon-Kennedy debate could be the reason.

In the 1960 presidential debate with John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon’s excessive perspiration and 5 o’clock shadow became fodder in the media and arguably one of the more memorable moments in debate history.

Another demand cited by the official: Both candidates are demanding a water glass, and not just any glass. They want an exact replica of water glasses used at the previous debates.

As the clock ticks down to the debate, both candidates are in full preparation mode.

Update

Video from Fox 5 in New York about the Hofstra preparations:

We’ll be eagerly awaiting kick-off at 9pm eastern time. More on this story as it develops.

Update

Watch the entire, unedited debate video here: Video: Final Presidential Debate from Hofstra University

68 comments to Final Presidential Debate tonight at 9PM ET / 6PM PT

  • kynelly

    Andy,

    Are you Jesus Christ and did you die on the cross for us? Because it amuses me that you can “judge” someone’s faith. If you have faith and believe in God then you should “know better”. Only God can judge…not Andy!

  • Andy

    only GOD can judge, but GOD also gave man laws to follow. Gay marriage, abortions (killing kids)………by these stardards it is easy to see that Obama is not a true Christian……….so kynelly i advise you to start reading your Bible and learn what it means to be a Christian

  • kynelly

    Andy,

    This is the problem….people trying to “JUDGE” others. These individuals must report to God and ask for forgiveness. Therefore READ YOUR BIBLE……that is the reason Jesus died on the cross, why we pray, and why we fellowship on Sunday’s.

    Obama is NOT telling people to be Gay or Kill babies, he understands that “people are people” and WE as AMERICANS can not judge others as there is a “higher power”. But we can love and support our neighbors-that is what makes America beautiful.

    You can NOT discredit someone for trying to support American’s as “people”. And as a Christian, I hope you don’t TURN your back on someone that may need prayer, guidance, or spiritual support.

    If you want to “discredit” someone…THEN MOVE TO ANOTHER COUNTRY where people are killed, raped, and tortured for believing and supporting others.

    May God Bless you!

    Obama/Biden 2008

  • Babs

    Jennifer Alcock, I see your post got lost in all the campaigning on this thread. Let me answer your question as to what can be done for farmers.

    Under an Obama administration, 80% of all farmers in this country will fall into the tax bracket to be slammed with higher taxes and fines on health insurance. This is whether they file individual tax returns – as 80% of them do – or if they file as small businesses. What you’ll see is more farm acreage on the auction block, and higher prices at your grocery store. You see, they are a member of that sector of “wealth” that Obama wants to spread around. Understand, it doesn’t matter what their bottom line on their tax form is after loses from bad drought or flood crops, equipment and labor costs, and fuel costs (most tractors get about 1/2 mile to the gallon). It matters what they write on the line for “gross income”. You will begin to see farmers allowing thousands of acres to lie fallow, and row crops become a thing of the past. Try buying groceries and fresh produce that are not on the shelves anymore. Then try to do business with grocery stores who will have to price themselves right out of business. Try buying a cotton t-shirt when the cotton fields lay bare. Then count up all the farm employees and grocery store employees and retail apparel stores who will join Obama’s welfare lines.

    That’s what Obama will do for farmers.

    I don’t know what McCain will do specifically for the farm industry – except not to tax them out of existence and get their fuel costs under control – not a small thing. But I DO know that he will do them NO HARM, unlike Obama.

    I come from a long line of farmers, and I know what I’m talking about.

  • Andy

    kynelly writes:

    Obama is NOT telling people to be Gay or Kill babies, he understands that “people are people” and WE as AMERICANS can not judge others as there is a “higher power”. But we can love and support our neighbors-that is what makes America beautiful.

    O.K. now i got it…..lets vote for someone whom believes in letting the killings of babies be an individual right….thanks for clearing that up………

  • Will

    Andy – “O.K. now i got it…..lets vote for someone whom believes in letting the killings of babies be an individual right….thanks for clearing that up……… ”

    You have no substance in your posts. Let’s make it clear, before you can scientifically prove an embryo is equivalent to a human life, you cannot throw words such as “…letting the killings of babies be an individual right…”.

    Here is an irrefutable fact. Republicans support the death penalty. By your moral standards, we should learn to forgive. Last time I checked, you don’t forgive by executing somebody. Why the double standard?

    Andy, I feel sorry that your judgement has been clouded by these petty issues. You lack the ability to prioritize issues.

    Can you explain which of McCain’s solutions to issues and his policies you (so blindly) agree with?

  • Andy

    This is really something to think about!

    ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!!!!

    Now isn’t this something to think about!
    If Barack Obama would apply for a job with the FBI or with the Secret Service, he would be disqualified because of his past association with William Ayers, a known terrorist.
    If he is elected President he would not qualify to be his own body guard!

    (and the majority of the people don’t care)

  • Andy

    u right will……lets kill the baby before it is born….yea then the child will not become a criminal…..what a way to go……..u abviously don’t read the Bible……there are crimes that GOD (I know this is hard for you to understand) instructs his people to put the criminal to death……Ezra 7:25-27

  • kynelly

    Andy…I guess you are the ONLY one in this country that knows GOD! I guess you are PeRfEcT, you NeVeR had to ask GOD for forgiveness and you are the model American. LOL LOL!!

    Give me a break…go make yourself happy,vote for McCain and continue to “claim” to be a Christian-get on your knees and ask GOD to remove the negativity within in! DONT FORGET….Only GOD can “judge” NOT Andy!!!! May GOD bless you my brother!

    Obama/Biden 2008

  • Andy

    kynelly …. i don’t claim to perfect at all………i ask for forgivness all the time…. i just feel that we need to support the the person with the best Christian ideas…. and i feel this person is McCain………Thanks for the conversation……and GOD Bless You Too My Brother…..Although we differ on political views I don’t see you as being a bad person

  • the fact that anyone is praising McCain for his performance in the third debate proves that he and Palin have lowered people’s expectations down to nothing (don’t forget, the VP debates were a tie!)

  • Babs

    I don’t think it proves that at all, movie fan. But then, each candidate has their own supporters who see the other candidate through very distorted lenses. That’s why you feel the way you do, that Obama could never lose, never misspeak, never do something that wasn’t good for you. Many McCain supporters feel the same about McCain, and you both have a right to that. Don’t belittle anyone who would praise McCain – that person can also belittle you for praising Obama. And fairly. And nothing is accomplished with that.

  • Will

    Andy – “u right will……lets kill the baby before it is born….yea then the child will not become a criminal…..what a way to go……..u abviously don’t read the Bible……there are crimes that GOD (I know this is hard for you to understand) instructs his people to put the criminal to death……Ezra 7:25-27 ”

    Andy, why are you dodging my questions? I asked you why the double standard with conservatives being for death penalty. I asked you which of McCain’s policies and solutions to issues you agree on. You’re stretching the truth with Obama and Ayre’s connection/association. Just because you’re on the same board or been in the same room doesn’t mean you promote, sponsor, or endorse somebody’s past actions.

    And you’re right, I don’t read the bible. I stopped reading fairy tales a long time ago. You know why it’s hard for me to understand? Because my mind is not primitive enough to think the world is black and white. Andy, your attitude, personality, and ignorance is disgusting. You come off as an obnoxious bible thumper. If you want to be a positive influence stop jamming your beliefs into other people’s throats.

  • Andy

    will,

    i will pray for you because you really need it. I agree on McCain’s policy on economic growth. if you research how this economy got to this point you will find that McCain in 2005 tried along with a few other senators to open the governments eyes to this sub prime morgage crisis. And let me make it clear that if a person sits in a church for 20yrs (Obama in Rev. Writes church) and does not know what beliefs that church has, then that person must not be very smart (Obama). And you are right i do read my BIBLE every night. It gives my the patience i need to deal with non believers like yourself. You don’t have no idea how to think past the worldy events around you. how sad. so i will pray for you my lil bo bo…..maybe even read my “fairy tale” to you one day.

  • Will

    Andy – “i will pray for you because you really need it.”
    Andy – “And you are right i do read my BIBLE every night. It gives my the patience i need to deal with non believers like yourself.”

    First of all, Andy – my delusional friend, I don’t need you to pray for me. But hey, it’s a free country so go for it. Secondly, define “believer”. Are you a “believer” because you belong to the Christian community? Would the person next to you, assuming he’s a Muslim/Jewish/Buddhist, be dubbed a “non-believer”? I believe in many things, so I really don’t understand the term “believer” you’ve coined. For example, I believe in the big bang theory. I believe in evolution. I believe you’re delusional. So why exactly am I a “non-believer”? What is the criteria to be a “believer”? What patience do you have to deal with when it comes to “non-believers”? I hope not all Christians are as judgmental as you.

    “You don’t have no idea how to think past the worldy events around you”.

    Andy, you’re right, I DON’T have NO idea. But what I do know is English grammar, apparently you do not. And again, prioritize your needs, put down that Bible you read every night and pick up an ESL book instead.

    “I agree on McCain’s policy on economic growth.”

    No sh*t Sherlock. What part of word “explain” do you not comprehend? I specifically asked you to explain why you agree with his policies, I didn’t ask you to name which policy you agree with. Do you understand the word “explain”? Can you apply this concept in every day life? It seems you’re having a hard time expressing your arguments, or maybe it’s just the fact that your post is convoluted with a bunch of religious talking points.

    Sadly enough I know you don’t fully understand the idea behind McCain’s economic policy. I don’t think even think you’re old enough to vote, so the point of my post is to point out that you’re an imbecile, but fortunately you have a life time in growing up. How about you start doing it now?

  • Andy

    will – Andy, why are you dodging my questions? I asked you why the double standard with conservatives being for death penalty. I asked you which of McCain’s policies and solutions to issues you agree on.

    i don’t see the word “explain” anywhere. maybe you need to pay attention to what you are saying. you proved to be a waste of time. GOD BLESS YOU and may GOD touch your heart my lost friend. oh yea if you have not been able to understand what the term “non believer” is to a Christian, it means a person whom does not believe in GOD. but yes you are right, you can be a believer in the world and it will have different meanings. for example, you (will) can believe your smart but i think you prove that to be wrong. have a nice day and smile JESUS loves you.

  • Will

    “Can you explain which of McCain’s solutions to issues and his policies you (so blindly) agree with? ”

    That’s from my first post.

    You just proved my point. I ask you to explain, and all you do is quote me on my second post and then completely go off topic and continue on your religious babbling.

    I’m not even interested why you agree with McCain’s policy, I’m just calling you out because I know you don’t understand it nor how it can help out the economy. You’re just repeating the talking points that you most likely have heard on your favorite shows Limbaugh/Hannity.

    Andy – “for example, you (will) can believe your smart but i think you prove that to be wrong”

    I also love how you make general statements about me without backing any of it up. I’m not surprised though, it goes well along with religion and fairy tale stories.

    When did I claim I’m smart? I said you’re an imbecile, that does not imply I am smart. Your logic is a**-backwards, again, not surprising since you let religion dictate your way of life.

    Stop making this about religion, this is a political forum, not a church.

  • i love mcain but obama and mcain both have good points i dont think people should bash on them just because of the color of their skin see ya.