In the run up to the American presidential elections we will be asking a panel of voters to share their views on the key issues. Here they give their opinion on the third and final presidential debate between US President George W Bush and his Democratic challenger John Kerry.
MEET THE PANEL
Name: Gary Webb
Lives: Sacramento, California
Current voting intention: Non-voter
In 10 words or less:
"Author and responsible anarchist"
Kerry didn't win this debate quite so much as Bush lost it.
As badly as the president handled foreign policy questions, he was, amazingly, worse on economic and domestic policy.
What, Bush was asked, would he say to a worker who has lost his job to outsourcing? Go back to school and learn a new trade, he said.
What to do about the stagnant minimum wage? Go back to school and get a better job.
What about affirmative action programs? Make sure you stay in school, so you won't need them.
Again, Bush's low regard for the truth was stunning.
Despite his denial, he had in fact, as Kerry pointed out, previously said he wasn't concerned about Osama Bin Laden.
Kerry's health care proposal is not a government-run health plan. And if state-funded health care is so horrible, as Bush insists, why do people in Japan, Canada, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, Italy and the UK live longer than we do?
Bush must think we're all stupid. His only truthful utterance of the night may have been when he said he was in many people's prayers.
That's for sure. They're praying he doesn't get re-elected.
I'm glad someone else picked up on the default "get an education" response to so many of the questions. I was beginning to think that my husband and I were the only ones that noticed it. It was like someone asking what the weather is like and you telling them you had turkey for dinner. Irrelevant and not an answer to the questions asked. I do have a question. When asked if they would appoint a judge that would overturn Roe v Wade, Kerry clearly said "no". Bush said he doesn't have a litmus test. What exactly does that mean? I've yet to meet one person who could explain that answer to me. They were asked a yes or no question.
Amy, Lafayette, Louisiana, USA
I live in a country with government-funded health care and it certainly works well here. I have one major problem with Gary's comments: He describes his current voting intention as "non-voter". That is not at all "responsible" in my book. How you can live with a democracy in which less than half the adult population bother to get involved is beyond me. Making democracy work is a shared responsibility, and if you dislike the current system, exercising your democratic rights is the only fair way to bring about changes. Go vote, Gary!
Mette, Aarhus, Denmark
Gary I like your comments - although I'm a little confused as to your 'non-Voter' status - it seems you are sensible, informed and care about what the current administration is doing to your fellow citizens - so why don't you vote?
Garth, Paris, France
I can add nothing to Mr Webb's comments, as he summed up the debate perfectly. Re. his final comment, I have never prayed as much as I have lately, and will continue to do so through November 2!
Lydia Selwood, Virginia, USA
This is just brilliant. Apparently this expert realises the importance of this election and his own comments enough that his intention is to be a non-voter. If you don't plan on voting, do you think your gripes amount to much? I would gladly give your citizenship and voting rights to somebody that would use them!
Maria, Kansas City, USA
I have to say I agree with Gary. I think Bush is an idiot and I don't trust him. I am not a Democrat or a Republican, I am a Libertarian and I am voting for Kerry because I think he is the only candidate who can realistically beat Bush.
Abraham Hanif, San Jose, USA
Nice response. You don't have any comments yet, in my opinion because none are needed. I would just like to ad, as much as the Bush campaign has tried to make Kerry out as a flip-flopper, he is much worse. And to top it off, he either doesn't remember flipping (the Bin Laden issue I'm so glad was brought up) or just plain lies about it. I don't see how Americans could possibly want to vote for a president who has a record of lies. Sure, Kerry flip-flops here and there, but to me, changing one's opinion merely shows they have the intellectual ability to review and alter their stance on particular issues. I agree though, Kerry barely needed to show up last night.
Shawn, Asheboro, North Carolina
This is responsible commentary. And the anarchists among us are mostly misunderstood due to an irresponsible press. Henri Cartier-Bresson was an anarchist. His wonderful comment about anarchy is as follows: "The root and foundation of anarchy is community and love." The press would have us believe that anarchists are destroyers of the public faith where the opposite is true. The philosophy of anarchy espouses the belief that, if people could care enough about each other, and, in small groups set about solving their community's problems, there would be no need for government.