December 4, 2007


Gen Y gives McCain a look (Margot Sanger-Katz, 12/04/07, Concord Monitor)

His views on those issues were news to many students in the audience. McCain believes climate change is a vital threat to the planet, favors federal funding of stem cell research, and thinks that health care was perhaps the most important domestic issue facing the country.

"I thought McCain was really insightful," said Megan Grodotzky, a senior, who said she thinks she'll vote in the Democratic primary. "I'm shocked to find out that I do agree with him on some issues."

McCain told students that though he's not the youngest candidate in the race - in fact, he's the second-oldest of the bunch - his politics are aligned with the interests of young people. He cares about climate change, he said, even though it will not cause much trouble in his lifetime. He's concerned about federal spending because it will affect the viability of Social Security for future generations.

"I'm going to be gone," he said. "You're the ones who are going to have to live with this."

Several students in the audience said that McCain's age didn't affect their view of him.

"He's the age of my grandfather, but the thing that got me at the end is that he's got kids our age," said Michelle Maranto, a junior, who said that after last night's event, she planned to vote for McCain in the primary.

Kiarra Lynch, a senior who voted for Democrat John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election, said she believed McCain when he said he cared about her and her classmates.

"I think he actually does care about us and talks to us, where a lot of candidates talk at you," she said. "I didn't think he was just saying that."

Three times during the event, moderators showed the results of an interactive poll, asking internet viewers to rate their appraisal of McCain. As the hour wore on, the number of students who said they agreed with him on the issues that mattered most rose.

"I think this could be a message to your Republican rivals who have not come on," said Chris Cillizza, a Washington Post reporter who shared moderating duties with two MTV hosts. Several Democratic candidates have participated in similar MTV and MySpace forums, but McCain is the first in his party to sign up.

McCain had another idea.

"Can I have another hour?"

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 4, 2007 4:18 PM

Every Republican should do this stuff. It circumvents the ingrained bias of the media, and it gives them a chance to learn how to breathe in a different culture.

Posted by: jim hamlen at December 5, 2007 1:15 AM