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DC09

Bush and Kerry Gear Up for First Debate

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CORAL GABLES, Fla. (Reuters) - President Bush and Democratic rival Sen. John Kerry wrapped up debate preparations and headed for Florida on Wednesday, with Kerry promising the confrontation will reveal "the truth" about the president.

"I'm looking forward to tomorrow night for an opportunity to share with Americans the truth, not the sound bites, not the advertisements, the truth," Kerry said as he left Wisconsin, where he spent three days preparing for the 90-minute face-to-face encounter at the University of Miami on Thursday night.

Bush toured recent storm damage in Florida on his fourth visit to the state since a series of hurricanes pelted the crucial election battleground, and aides declared him fit for the encounter with Kerry.

"The president is ready," said top campaign adviser and long-time confidant Karen Hughes, who was among a number of senior aides who spent the weekend with Bush at his Crawford, Texas, ranch to help prepare him for the debates.

Both camps worked to lower expectations for their man in the high-stakes nationally televised debate, which will give as many as 50 million Americans their first chance to judge the two White House candidates side-by-side on the same stage.

The debate session will focus on foreign policy and is certain to be dominated by the wars in Iraq and on terror, issues that have been spotlighted in a tight presidential race that most polls show is leaning toward Bush.

Full Article

I almost feel sorry for Kerry. Bush always wins debates. thumbsup.gif

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I almost feel sorry for America having to choose between the two of them.

Actually I do feel sorry...

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Do they have the worm at the bottom of the screen, which indicates the audiences like or dislike of their answers, policies etc.....?

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I don't feel sorry for John Kerry I pity him. Yes pity, and before all of you John Kerry supporters start in on me, allow me a chance to explain. The research I have done leading up to this election leads me to cast my support for George Bush. I feel that his core values and strong beliefs will carry this great country through and provide a new feeling of patriotism not seen since Ronald Reagan.

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Exactly well said thumbsup.gif

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Here, Here twpdyp.. well said.. good to see yet another Bush vote! thumbsup.gif

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I hate this whole election. Can't wait til its over.

Will vote for Bush because how can you vote on the issues when a certain candidate can't make up his mind, but still

this is the worse election i can recall, and although I am young i can recall when Bush Sr was elected through now...this is just ridiculous..both sides are acting like big babies...don't want big babies running my country (this include Congress)

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Sadly this seems to be new trend in campaigning

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Kerry and Bush to go head-to-head

US President George W Bush and his Democratic challenger John Kerry will go head-to-head on Thursday in a key televised debate.

Both candidates will be attacking each other's records on national security and the conflict in Iraq.

Mr Kerry, a senator from Massachusetts, hopes to overturn Mr Bush's slight lead in the opinion polls.

Millions are expected to tune in for the first of three debates between the two men before the 2 November election.

The debate is taking place at 2100 EST (0200 BST Friday) at the University of Miami, in Coral Gables, Florida.

The BBC's Justin Webb in Washington says the expected TV audience makes the debates, especially this first one, the single most important set-piece event of the entire campaign.

All Mr Bush has to do is survive for 90 minutes, but Mr Kerry has to risk everything, our correspondent says. He has to persuade Americans he has the kind of character they want to see in the White House.

Focus on foreign policy

With just over a month until the election, Mr Kerry has stepped up his attacks on Mr Bush over Iraq, accusing the president of neglecting the war against terror.

Mr Bush, meanwhile, has been portraying Mr Kerry as indecisive, pointing out that he backed the decision to go to war.

Former Vice-President Al Gore, who lost out to Mr Bush in the 2000 election, has advised Mr Kerry not to underestimate the president.

"While George Bush's campaign has made 'lowering expectations' into a high art form, the record is clear - he's a skilled debater who uses the format to his advantage," Mr Gore wrote, in a letter published in Wednesday's New York Times.

Mr Gore said Mr Kerry should focus on attacking Mr Bush's record as president, "because... his performance in office amounts to a catastrophic failure".

The moderator in Thursday's debate is broadcaster Jim Lehrer, who has presided over nine such sessions in the last four presidential elections.

Other debates

Both campaigns plan to extend their debate to the internet.

Earlier this week, the Bush campaign launched a massive rapid-response effort called Debate Facts to rebut Mr Kerry's assertions during the debates, Wired magazine reported.

A member of the Democratic challenger's team reportedly said their campaign's blog will provide live commentary on the debates.

Mr Kerry and Mr Bush will take part in a second debate in Missouri, on 8 October, in a town-hall-style meeting.

The final debate is set for 13 October in Arizona, and will focus on domestic issues.

Vice-President Dick Cheney and Mr Kerry's running mate, John Edwards, will hold a single debate in Ohio on 5 October.

DEBATE RULES

Candidates will flip a coin to decide who starts

No props or notes allowed, except pen and blank paper

Warning light to flash when candidates go over allotted speaking time

MODERATOR: JIM LEHRER

Born in Kansas in 1934

Anchor of 60-minute evening news programme on PBS since 1983

Has chaired nine previous presidential debates

Praised and criticised for low-key approach to moderating

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/3703756.stm

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What does using the format to your advantage mean in this context?

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I'm guess by format they mean the debate style itself, as in he's good at debating were they're not allowed notes etc, as opposed to political arguements or something where they have all the relevent info in front of them huh.gif .... well thats my guess... where's Fluffy when you need him crying.gif

Edited by Talon S.

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[attachmentid=5636]This is my other reason for giving George W. Bush all of the support I can possible give.

post-9785-1096562131.jpg

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Bush is so worried that his camp has asked for the heating to be turned up because kerry sweats a lot on stage.

How cynical and pathetic is that.

I hope kerry mauls him.

I actually truly believe that i could totally mall him in a debate.

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What does using the format to your advantage mean in this context?

285519[/snapback]

Originally everyone opted to skip the actual content of the debate as they all knew it would be rhetoric on both sides and choose to base the results of the debate on a best three out of five in the art of Rock/Paper/Scissors.

Unfortunately with only 6 weeks of preperation time President Bush could not remember all three options and continually selected options not available to him in standard rules Rock/Paper/Scissors. After repeatedly selecting "Weapons of Mass Destruction" on the count of three it was painfully apparent that Bush would not have the upper hand in this form of debate.

Kerry faired no better in Rock/paper/Scissor training; on the count of three Kerry repeatedly changed his mind after seeing the response of his training partner.

With frustration at an all time high both camps decided to opt for a standard debate rules.

As for using the format to your advantage; my guess is that Bush is very good at on the spot rhetoric... grin2.gif

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