John McCain has already held a series of Town Hall meetings, but this Friday will be the first official debate where he meets Barack Obama. The topic of the debate, the first of three, will be foreign affairs. Obama’s already well known for his rousing speaking style – but the New York Times says we can expect some scrappy fighting from McCain.

“He has used fairly consistent techniques during his roughly 30 debates on the national stage: he is an aggressive competitor who scolds his opponents, grins when he scores and is handy with the rhetorical shiv. Just ask Mitt Romney, whom Mr. McCain filleted on several occasions in debates during the primaries, perhaps most infuriatingly for Mr. Romney when Mr. McCain misleadingly asserted that Mr. Romney favored a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq.

“A review of several of Mr. McCain’s debates shows that he is most comfortable and authentic when the subject is foreign policy. And in a stroke of good fortune, foreign policy is the topic for Friday, the first of three 90-minute debates with Senator Barack Obama, the Democratic nominee.”

Read the full story here.

Peter Fray

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