4/17/2008

Obama and Clinton battle on

A bizarre debate between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in Pennsylvania

?ULTIMATE FIGHTING?, a free-for-all of boxing, kicks and wrestling manouevres, has made sweeping gains in American sport viewing, largely at the expense of traditional boxing. Perhaps ABC News has been taking note. The television network hosted the 21st debate between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton of the primary season, and the last before their important April 22nd primary in Pennsylvania. Rather than focus, as previous debates have, on health care or Iraq, however, the moderators threw an odd bag of unexpected identity-politics questions at the candidates for a full hour, before turning to high-minded policy.

The first question was perhaps predictable. Last week it emerged that Mr Obama had said that ?bitter? Americans in small towns, facing economic hardship, ?cling? to their guns or religion or anti-immigrant sentiment. Mrs Clinton has spent the past five days talking about nothing else, accusing Mr Obama of being ?elistist? and ?condescending?. The candidates were each asked if the other would make a good vice-president (both dodged) and if the other could win the presidency as Democratic nominee. Mr Obama said confidently that Mrs Clinton could beat John McCain, the Republican. Mrs Clinton took more prodding to say the same of her fellow Democrat. ...



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[Source: The Economist: News analysis -

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