Page last updated at 12:54 GMT, Wednesday, 15 October 2008 13:54 UK

Voters' Views: Sumit Galhotra

Voters have questioned Barack Obama and John McCain in a town hall-style debate dominated by the financial crisis and foreign policy.

Here Republican and Democratic voters from across the US reflect on how the candidates performed.

Sumit Galhotra Graduate student | Democrat

The notion that Barack Obama lacks experience needs to be laid to rest

Sumit Galhotra
Age: 24
Lives: New York
Occupation: Graduate student
Last election voted:
In 10 words or less: Activist, worldly, liberal, cosmopolitan

"The debate set out the stark contrast between the candidates in terms of personality and policy.

Obama elaborated on a host of issues from the economy to foreign policy. Senator McCain offered no clear solutions and was constantly attacking Obama when really he should have been articulating his own policies.

McCain's answers reminded me of my laundry after it comes out of the dryer - full of fluff. Most noteworthy was McCain's answer on the social security crisis. He said the solution was easy. The crisis is one of the biggest challenges that faces our nation. Once again McCain has proven how out of touch he is.

Clearly McCain lacks solutions and is throwing out generic statements as if he is competing in a beauty pageant. Simply saying things like "We are American" shows how hollow his candidacy is.

Obama's answer in relation to intervention in Pakistan showed what a wise president he would make. He argued for encouraging democracy there and increasing non-military aid. The Bush administration has failed to understand the complexities of that region, which has hurt us in enormous ways.

The whole notion that Barack Obama lacks experience needs to be laid to rest. What matters most is good judgment. What good is McCain's experience when that very experience took us into a war we shouldn't have started?

The debates have reaffirmed my views. As a former Hillary Clinton supporter, I am now behind Barack Obama 100%. I hope my fellow Clinton supporters will join me in this choice."

You can add your comments and questions on Sumit's views using the form below:

Your comments:

Wow Sumit. You are probably the only American on this panel that actually understood what happened in that debate. Good summary. It's a shame so many of your fellow Americans have blinkered, partisan views
Alex, London

I find Sumit's views to be very partisan and he only hears what he agrees with. In general the debate was fairly even relative to what each candidate wanted to accomplish. I felt McCain was a little more specific while Obama continued to generalise and play the role of being very cool and a pontificate.
Fred Meyer, CT USA

Sumit, I completely agree with you. I, too, am a former Clinton supporter and I was finding it difficult to have faith in Obama. However, these past few weeks have shown me a candidate I can believe in with Obama's ideals and a candidate that haunts my worst nightmares with McCain's scary rants and disgusting attack ads, not to mention a VP candidate that makes him that much more terrifying.
Jen, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

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The readers' panel has been selected from as wide a cross-section of people as possible and may not be representative of wider US public opinion.

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