Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton on Tuesday challenged Sen. Barack Obama to meet in four separate Democratic debates before the March 4 primaries in Texas and Ohio -- including an event scheduled for Feb. 28 in Houston.
But Obama, of Illinois, did not immediately commit to travel to Houston to take on Clinton just five days before what could be a crucial Texas primary.
As voters in 22 states went to polls in the primary avalanche known as Super Tuesday, Clinton, of New York, called on her Democratic rival to agree to several debates.
"Senator Clinton has enjoyed the opportunities to debate and the chance to get her message out," said Mark Penn, Clinton's chief strategist, in a conference call with reporters. "Voters ought to have the opportunity to see these two candidates compete against each other in a one-on-one setting."
Clinton has accepted invitations to appear on ABC's This Week on Sunday; Fox News in Washington on Monday; CNN from Ohio on Feb. 27; and MSNBC from the George R. Brown Convention Center on Feb. 28, her campaign said.
The Greater Houston Partnership, the sponsor of the Houston debate, has been trying for months to lure the candidates to the Bayou City.
NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams and the network's Washington bureau chief, Tim Russert, have agreed to moderate the Houston event.
Debate organizers have not said how tickets for the event would be distributed.
Side note #1: Please, Hillary, reconsider the Fox News debate decision. There's no need to enable that propaganda outlet. I hope Obama's response to all this is "I'll debate you any time, any place, except on Fox News".
Side note #2: Boy, was I wrong to root for Texas to move the primary up to February. Our votes sure do matter now, and we'll get even more attention than we would have had we been involved in Super Duper Tuesday. I'm happy to have been mistaken about this.
Side note #3: Glenn Smith and the Observer blog look at the Texas primary process. Vince has an exhaustive list of who has endorsed whom - for all the talk about how Hillary is supposed to be downballot death to Democrats here, a heck of a lot of Dem officeholders and candidates have endorsed her - and who is still up for grabs.
On to March! And as the last word on this, get ready to start zapping a bunch of campaign commercials. That's an aspect of this that we won't miss when it's all over.Posted by Charles Kuffner on February 06, 2008 to The making of the President