Will the Presidential Debate Go On?

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CBNNews.com -- Even with a bipartisan agreement from lawmakers of the $700 billion bailout, Republican presidential candidate John McCain may not be convinced it's enough action on the country's economic problems to attend Friday's scheduled presidential debate in Mississippi.

For more insight, click play to hear more from CBN News Political Reporter David Brody and Culture and Media Institute's Robert Knight.

President Bush, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, and McCain were scheduled to meet Thursday afternoon to discuss the crisis.

A spokesman for the McCain campaign said the afternoon developments had not changed his plans.

"There's no deal until there's a deal. We're optimistic but we want to get this thing done," McCain spokesman Brian Rogers said.

Meanwhile, his rival Obama still wants the debate to go as planned. He is scheduled to travel to the site of the debate in Mississippi.

Debating over the debate has become the latest political show as McCain and Obama try to show leadership at a time of national crisis.

"With so much on the line, for America and the world, the debate that matters most right now is taking place in the United States Capitol - and I intend to join it," McCain told reporters after addressing former President Clinton's Global Initiative in New York on Thursday before heading to Washington.

Obama said the debate should proceed because a president needs to be able to handle more than one issue at a time.

"Our election is in 40 days. Our economy is in crisis, and our nation is fighting two wars abroad. The American people deserve to hear directly from myself and Sen. McCain about how we intend to lead our country. The times are too serious to put our campaign on hold, or to ignore the full range of issues that the next president will face."

In Oxford, Miss., organizers continued to prepare for Friday's showdown between the two opponents.

At a news conference, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, a Republican, said he expected the presidential debate to go ahead, though he said he had no inside information.

"This is going to be a great debate tomorrow night. We're excited about it," Barbour said.

Television networks, too, were moving forward. "We're proceeding as if it's on and will until someone tells us that it's not," ABC spokeswoman Cathie Levine said.

Source: The Associated Press

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