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Clinton Letter Requests Debate A Week With Obama

First Posted: 03/28/08 03:45 AM ET Updated: 05/25/11 01:25 PM ET

Clinton Obama Debates Letter

Clinton campaign manager Pattie Doyle has released a copy of a letter sent to Obama's campaign, seeking a debate a week through the rest of the primary season. Read it below:

David Plouff
Campaign Manager
Obama for President
Chicago, IL

Dear David:

Congratulations again on your victories Tuesday night. As Senator Obama declared, it was a great evening for Democrats.

One of the things I've always appreciated about the Democratic Party is its willingness to engage the toughest issues facing our country, even if we don't always agree on how best to solve them.

After seven years of a Bush administration that has left the economy struggling and our health care system in crisis, Americans are certainly facing their fair share of challenges and deserve to hear how the candidates for the nomination will address them.

As such, I was disappointed to see that Senator Obama rejected the idea of having more debates given the fact that he and Senators Clinton have had only a single one-on-one debate. I think we can do better and so does Hillary.

Senator Clinton believes voters should have more than one opportunity to see the candidates discuss the issues and has accepted five debates between now and March 4th from CNN, MSNBC, WJLA, ABC and Fox News.

To that end, we hope Senator Obama will join Senator Clinton for a debate a week beginning this weekend. I'm sure we can find a suitable place to meet on the campaign trail. There's too much at stake and the issues facing the country are too grave to deny voters the opportunity to see the candidates up close.

As Senator Obama has said, "In an era when Americans are rightfully skeptical about the quality of our politics, let us set an example [they] can be proud of and give them the kind of campaign they deserve." We couldn't agree more.

Best wishes,

Patti Solis Doyle
Campaign Manager
Hillary Clinton for President


Obama responds -- he's not interested:

Mr. Obama said most of that fighting would be done on the ground in the next voting states, not in debates. When asked whether he would accept the invitation from Mrs. Clinton to attend four more debates in the coming weeks, he laughed.

"I don't think anybody is clamoring for more debates," he said. "We've had 18 debates so far. I think we've had 10 more than we've had in the last Democratic contest."

He said he would agree to at least one debate, but noted, "It's very important for me to spend time with voters."


Filed by Will Thomas  |