The Instigator
Ahking
Pro (for)
Winning
36 Points
The Contender
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Con (against)
Losing
12 Points

Barack Obama would be a Better President than John McCain.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/12/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,715 times Debate No: 3996
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (33)
Votes (16)

 

Ahking

Pro

Hello again, my opponent asked for this debate while I had an identical debate running. Seeing as how my other opponent is taking some time to respond, I figured I would oblige LR4N6FTW3EVA. Here is the same first argument, hopefully both debates won't run parallel, but maybe they will. Since they might, it'd be better to run them simultaneously so this opponent can't use the first one to draw from. Good luck!

This 2008 election marks the end of the George Bush era - one marked by bitter partisan divides overseeing our economy crumble, the war in Iraq fester, the war on Terror stall, and America's standing in the world diminish to other world powers. This divide amongst liberals and conservatives, free market or government-intervention types, pro-war or anti-war folks is the biggest problem facing our country today above all these issues, because while we stand divided - at home, in the house and in the senate, none of our problems can get solved the right way.

From the Audacity of Hope, Obama writes: "What's troubling is the magnitude of our challenges and the smallness of our politics - the ease with which we are distracted by the petty and trivial, our chronic avoidance of tough decisions, our seeming inability to build a working consensus to tackle any big problem".

Obama is the best person we have to unite this country to solve our problems. From his work in the Illinois state legislature to the U.S Senate, he brings to America a new type of governing, one that is our only hope to overcoming these great struggles. His approach emphasizes the common values that everybody holds dear to and he tackles the reality of the issue at hand in a compromise that suits all sides equally.

The stances of the other candidates may be appealing to some, but they are not enough to lead this country. What's best for this country is achieved only by listening to all sides, and Obama has already proven his ability to do so in his "A More Perfect Union" speech which can be seen here on youtube: http://www.youtube.com......

He possesses an intelligent and wise mind capable of bridging the gaps of race, wealth, and beliefs to unite us in our common purpose for a better country. Only through unity can the United States of America survive, and only Obama can bring us this unity. That is why he would be a better president than McCain or Clinton.
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Con

First, I'll present my case for McCain, than I'll go after my opponent's case.

1. McCain has the know-how.
McCain has spent 24 years as an elected official. He knows the ins and outs of Washington DC. When Congress and the President disagree, they are forced to make a deal. McCain has friends and experience that he can use to help make the deal better for his side, rather than Congress's side. Obama on the other hand is new to Washington. He right now does not have the know how to work the system. Although he is very smart, when it comes to working the District he is fairly ignorant, as he only has 4 years of Washington experience.

2. McCain has connections.
As I said earlier, McCain has many friends in Washington, on both sides of the aisle. Proposing legislation takes many connections, or else the proposal will fail. Obama, as he is so new has not established these connections. Without these connections, no matter how good or bad his healthcare plan is, it won't get enacted.

3. McCain can handle the stress better.
McCain has a sixteen year old daughter, that is his only child living at home. Obama has to raise two young girls. McCain's daughter will be off to college soon, while Obama will be dealing with his daughters for the rest of his presidency. This, although not an amazingly limiting factor is one of many that will hurt Obama.

4. Deval Patrick is an indicator of an Obama presidency.
Deval Patrick, the Democratic governor of Massachusetts, ran a similar campaign as Obama, and they both share many of the same views. Patrick is also a quickly rising star, but his lack of experience made him an ineffective governor. He did not have the Beacon Hill connections to get important things done, although he tried. As he and Obama are very similar, we can expect a similar outcome.
Now, onto my opponent's case.

First he says that Obama will unite the nation. This is a flawed argument for several reasons. First, after the bitter Democratic primaries, many Democrats have said they would prefer McCain over Obama. In the recent Indiana primary, 46% in the exit poll said that Obama's connections with Rev. Wright were important in their decision. Although it shouldn't be a big deal, it has become one that is dividing the nation. Although McCain had that business with the anti-Catholic minister, it hasn't divided the nation. Also, in the Indiana exit polls 33% said that they would not vote for Obama in the general election, that's not really what I call a uniting candidate.

Also, my opponent never says why McCain wouldn't be able to do the same thing.

Then my opponent cites Obama's work in the Illinois state legislature and the Senate. When asked by Chris Matthews about what legislative accomplishments Obama has made, Texas States Senator Kirk Watson (D-TX) could not come up with even one. That does not shine favorably on Obama's record. Also, I read the list of bills Obama has sponsored or cosponsored, at thomas.gov, and it is 351 bills and resolutions that he has sponsored or cosponsored. This would look favorably on him, except for the fact that most of it was simply resolutions that he cosponsored. Out of the many I looked at, he only wrote a couple. This is not a major accomplishment.

My opponent then says Obama will listen to all sides. He doesn't say why only Obama can do this. Much of McCain's legislative accomplishments were bipartisan efforts, showing that McCain can do this as well.

"He possesses an intelligent and wise mind capable of bridging the gaps of race, wealth, and beliefs to unite us in our common purpose for a better country. Only through unity can the United States of America survive, and only Obama can bring us this unity. That is why he would be a better president than McCain or Clinton."
My opponent does not say why McCain can't do the very same thing.
Debate Round No. 1
Ahking

Pro

Ahking forfeited this round.
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Con

Ahking unfortunately didn't post this round. Oh well, no big deal, we'll get to it next round. 12345
Debate Round No. 2
Ahking

Pro

First I'll support my case and then move onto my opponent's.

Barack Obama has been through a few rough patches, no hiding this - but those are not enough to stop him from being the uniter. What has happened so far in the general election has no indication on Obama's ability to unite, because his ability to unite is exhibited politically and not popularly. Popularly, there are many people who are incapable of unity; incapable of excepting a black president, incapable of compromising, and incapable of empathy. The numbers of these people are very small, but they no doubt are enough to prohibit Obama from being a uniter in the 'popular' sense.

But where he unites is politically, the place that matters first for a US president. John McCain works across partisan lines like Obama does, no doubt, but where Obama goes that McCain doesn't is the gap between different interests. Obama has the ability to unite not just democrats and republicans, but the many shades of gray - the major interests - in America that don't necessarily belong to a party. I'm talking about rich and poor, working class and capitalists, and the many more distinctions that exist in America. One of Obama's acts in Senate was the Coburn(a Republican)-Obama bill, which passed to create an online database to publish all of the government's spending and can be viewed here: http://www.usaspending.gov.... This act bridged partisan lines, but also served the interests of every American by promoting transparency and accountability in the government.

Obama co-sponsored the Lugar-Obama Bill, which did something that nobody had been able to do since the war in Afghanistan - unite the interests of the doves and the hawks. The Lugar-Obama bill accounts for and the reduces the number of conventional weapons that can be used by terrorists against American troops, while at the same time reducing the number of weapons in the world to appeal to the doves. This bill increases the overall security in the world in such a way that everybody can agree on, and is just one example of many of the ways Obama does politics and unites people.

My opponent has brought up the question: "why can't John McCain do all of these things?" Indeed, he has similar policies on energy independence and globalization that Obama has, and a history of bipartisan politics. But there is one bipartisan stain that brings up some very strong questions about John McCain's integrity, honesty, and loyalty. I am talking about the Keating Five scandal which saw John McCain and four other senators receive money to support a bank firm. John McCain was bribed over 100,000 dollars in this scandal to support this bank which was being investigated by the Senate. First of all, where do McCain's loyalties lie? Is he not incorruptible? Like the Bush administration is excessively sympathetic to the oil industry, McCain has shown in the past that he could excessively support a single interest at the detriment of others. By definition that is divisive and not a sign that McCain is a unifier.

Now as my opponent's first point says, McCain has the knowhow to "make the deal better for his side, rather than congress's side" when congress and the president disagree. If McCain were to do that, he would be just as divisive as George W. Bush who has vetoed many democratically favored bills. To be a uniter, the president and congress must find a way to agree on the bill instead of disagreeing and overpowering the other side through votes or vetoes. That is the old way of politics.

Obama's inexperience is a blessing because he is not accustomed to this old way of politics. A man who is accustomed to the old divisive politics that led to slow, ineffective, and frustrating policies may be too stuck in his ways to try something new to break this country out of its rut. Obama has ten years of experience in public life too - 6 years in the Illinois State Senate and 4 years in the US Senate. Those years in the State Senate are equally valuable because they give him experience working out problems and developing his style of leadership. Also, experience and know-how are not indicative of presidential skill: Abraham Lincoln only served 2 years in the House, and he turned out fine.

McCain's connections don't matter too much when one is president. When president, you are connected to everybody. Everybody listens to you. The president's main job isn't to propose legislature either, as my opponent is suggesting connections will help him with. The president sets policy and organizes the different bureaucracies (defense dept, CIA, NSA, state dept, etc) and connections don't matter there. Connections in the way that my opponent may be suggesting - through favors - is another divisive tool of the old politics. Back-room favors don't solve problems in the way they should be solved: by looking at its reality, coming up with a solution, presenting that solution to bipartisan colleagues, and working out any suggestions or contradictions to find a solution that is best for the country. Connections for political favors hurt the country by serving narrow interests and political bipartisanships, and if McCain is inclined to do those things, like another Keating Five, then he wouldn't be a very effective president.

And the president is a very stressful job, no doubt, and one has got to be a good stress-handler to be an effective president. But how can you argue McCain handles stress better? A man who has many problems in his life may be capable of dealing with them all better than a man who has few. You can never know unless you have proof. Obama has never exploded at anyone or collapsed into tears on the campaign trail, or done anything to show that he can't handle stress. McCain on the other hand, is an older man, and older men have more health problems then younger men. That means McCain is the one more at risk for stress-related complications.

As for Deval Patrick, Obama is running for president, not governor. Also, no two men are alike, and Obama is clearly more qualified to be running for president than Deval Patrick. But I'll take this on anyway: The disagreements between him and the Massachusetts House of Reps was over building a casino in Massachusetts - a matter of principle and not connections. Even more so, it was a matter of divisions and political maneuvering. Deval Patrick and Obama don't do things the same way. He's just a convenient comparison.

Like I said earlier in this debate, Obama's unity is more political than popular. But popularly, he has inspired people to not only believe in him, but to believe in their own ability to change things. About 1 and 1/2 million people have donated to his campaign - way more than John McCain, and if that doesn't say anything about Obama's power to change this country, or his connections with everyday American people, then what can be said?
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Con

Okay, basically the reason why Obama is better at uniting (according to my opponent) is because McCain was involved in the Keating Five business. If he was involved, it was minimal involvement. The Senate Ethics Committee found that he, and John Glenn had very little involvement with the Keating scandal.

My opponent also says that Obama makes uniting political acts. Apparently he isn't aware that most of McCain's major legislation was bipartisan. We've got McCain-Feingold, McCain and Kerry investigating in Vietnam looking for MIA soldiers, Lieberman and McCain creating the 9/11 commission, McCain and Hollings creating the Aviation and Transportation Security Act, McCain-Lieberman Climate Stewardship Act, and with Senator Ted Kennedy on immigration reform.

Also my opponent says that McCain sells out to interest groups. McCain-Feingold campaign finance reforms were one of the worst things to happen to interest groups, I really don't see how that's selling out.

My opponent then says that McCain's political know-how will be bad for the country, as it would divide the country. To the contrary, it would help him and Congress work together and get things done. Obama's inexperience will make him easy to be bullied by Congress. That is certainly not a blessing.

Also, my opponent claims connections aren't important, but unfortunately, in Washington they are. Obama can go up to his fellow Senators and say "Change, Hope, Dreams, we need new healthcare." all he wants, but all that's going to happen is that they're going to laugh at him. McCain will go up and say "If you support my immigration proposal I'll help your drug legislation get through." This will allow him to garner support, and get legislation passed.

On the stress issue I'll agree that neither candidate is very qualified, but McCain has handled his tress longer, and can do it better, especially because he is not raising young children.

Although Obama may be more qualified than Patrick, he has to run the country rather than the state of Massachusetts. And, contrasting my opponent's claim, there was more than just the casino issue. And, also contrasting my opponent, Patrick and Obama are pretty similar. They both have the opposition to the business as usual mentality, and you can see what that did to Patrick.

Vote Con.
Debate Round No. 3
33 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by SnoopyDaniels 9 years ago
SnoopyDaniels
Isn't this debate.org? You bet I love a good debate.
Posted by Ahking 9 years ago
Ahking
So a conservative is someone who owns a gun, is very religious, and votes republican? And I thought you were arguing that Obama is unfair! You shouldn't be putting labels on groups like that. There is no such thing as a clear cut liberal or conservative, these words only exist to describe someone with certain beliefs. Everyone has different beliefs, and thus a religious gun-owning republican-voting liberal exists and in fact I've KNOWN one.

So yes, lets do this debate thing. I can see by the way you speak in debate lingo all the time that you're itching for one bad.
Posted by SnoopyDaniels 9 years ago
SnoopyDaniels
I can't believe that I have to explain this...

Did he or did he not associate those who "cling to guns" and "cling to religion" with racism and bitterness? "Antipathy to people who aren't like them" is just a nice way of saying "racist." He's either looking down on them, or he's making an honest, sympathetic, but completely ignorant statement. Either way it doesn't look good.

Of course he should have said it differently. The fact that he admits that he should have said it differently doesn't indicate that he didn't mean what he said in the first place. Come on, you guys are smarter than this. Are you honestly so mesmerized with this man that you have completely left behind your skepticism and distrust of politicians?
Posted by attrition 9 years ago
attrition
Snoop Dizzle, I'm sure he was mostly speaking to conservatives, but never did he indicate he was looking down on them. If looked at with a single bit of objectivity, he was referring to many individuals that pick one or two issues that have no impact on their day to day lives and vote accordingly. Granted, he used a broad generalization that is not entirely true, but in many cases it is and he acknowledged that it should have been said differently. I'll try to explain it...AGAIN. Try to read carefully before simply brushing aside with you conservative brush stroke. For instance in the 2004 election, Republican operatives were able to put on many ballots, the notion of state constitutionally banning same sex marriage. A big get out the vote. Why vote against your economic interests to protect some perceived threat on you life style. The typical farmer in Indiana is not going to be affected by gay marriage in any way whatsoever, and yet they vote Republican because they think that Republicans think, 'fa-gs' are going to hell too. Maybe they're right, in that Republicans think that. I tend to think it's mostly a wedge issue primarily preying on those very conservatives Obama is referring to. The Republicans put Gay marriage on ballots all the while spending billions on a war that is not making us safer, not making us stronger, and causing more and more suffering in the world. Sounds like Christian values to me. NOT! Consider as well, the many, many voters that are Socially conservative (black people for instance) but are Democrats because the Republican party doesn't speak for them on most other issues. Another demographic that is primarily Democrat but conservative to moderate are Labor Unions.

And FLatwhite, he is being called an elitist, which he clearly is not. Also the label of elitist could just as easily be put to Limbaugh or Ann Coulter. Limbaugh is the biggest elitist I can think of even though he is not an elite member of society
Posted by SnoopyDaniels 9 years ago
SnoopyDaniels
Excuse me, Ahking, but the last time somebody picked a fight over the difference between the meanings of elitism and elite was when ATTRITION brought it up.

By the way, attrition, the definition you gave of elite said nothing about a person's upbringing.

Go ahead and start the challenge, ahking.

BTW, do you know any liberals who own guns, are especially religious, and vote republican? Obama was CLEARLY referring to conservatives.
Posted by flatwhite 9 years ago
flatwhite
"hey flatwhite - loosen up. It's not like some joking isn't allowed."

My apologies. You didn't throw in emoticons or any el-oh-els so the humor whizzed right past my left ear.

"And Flatwhite, well, I DO know what the difference is"

Leme guess - you just now googled it? If you knew the meaning before, why launch into a multi-paragraph straw man attack premised on the merits of being "elite"?
Posted by attrition 9 years ago
attrition
Just for the recornd, Obama didn't actually apologize for the remark. He said he was sorry if people took offense to his remarks (since it was taken wrong) and he stated that it should have been said a different way. By that, he meant it, but it is spun by the Right and even Hillary to mean something he didn't intend.

And Flatwhite, well, I DO know what the difference is and I find it nauseating that someone like Obama has been portrayed as an elitist. He was raised by a single mom and at one point had to be on food stamps, worked hard to get scholarships to the prestigious schools he attended and instead of becoming a corporate lawyer, chose to invest in the poor in his community and organize with them to get people who are typically not involved with politics to actually take an interest in things that affect their lives.
Posted by Ahking 9 years ago
Ahking
You need to take a breath snoopy. We weren't debating then and we aren't debating yet. Move out of the whole debate mindset its not a compelling way to have a conversation.

Anyway, I'm glad you'd like me to challenge you to a debate. Here's the preface for the topic so you can read it and understand it before I challenge you.

The Current Administration adopted a policy of diplomatic silence to states like Cuba and Iran. Given that talks with Iran have been going on through Iraq, a more effective way of dealing with their nuclear program and involvement in Iraq would be through official diplomatic talks. Obama is calling for tough diplomacy with these states instead of a policy of silence. But let's forget Obama for now, and debate this purely on the merits of policy.

Post back here if you want to debate this or have anything you'd like to add.

And by the way, his comment was not about "conservatives" it was about people living in rural towns in the mid-west. I'm not asking you this, but you should ask yourself, do you really understand what Obama said or could there be something else that you're missing because of your bias? Secondly, you cannot say all politicians are fakes. That is naive.
Posted by Ahking 9 years ago
Ahking
hey flatwhite - loosen up. It's not like some joking isn't allowed.
Posted by SnoopyDaniels 9 years ago
SnoopyDaniels
Point taken, attrition, although someone's "status" isn't exactly an accurate reflection of their character. There are a lot of people in this "elite" who's economic policies are totally ignorant. Their elite status doesn't have much meaning in that light. But I do understand where you're coming from. The whole concept of a republic is built on the idea that the general population isn't always best equipped to make decisions that affect the entire country.

Ahking, while attrition was able to present three policies of Obama's with which he agreed (which, I must admit, is somewhat consoling) you have still failed to do so. You say I'm biased, yet you haven't presented a single fact to back up anything you've said. Neither have I, really, but I'm not the one trying to convince you that John McCain is the best thing since sliced bread. You say he's one of the most heartfelt politicians you've ever seen, but anyone can ACT heartfelt, and as history has shown, politicians are masters of the stage. Furthermore, you just pointed out that Obama apologized for his statement about conservatives. Did he not mean it when he said it? If not, then where was his "heart" when he said it? You're simply not making any sense.

Tough diplomacy...? What exactly does that mean? I'd be happy to start an official debate with you. Go ahead and challenge me, and use your opening statement to explain why Obama's foreign policy is better than any of the other two candidates.
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Vote Placed by oboeman 8 years ago
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