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Campaign notes: PBS' Jim Lehrer weighs in on debate

  • October 5, 2012 - 10:48 PM

PBS' JIM LEHRER WEIGHS IN

Responding to criticism about how he moderated the debate, Lehrer said: "It was frustrating as it began happening, when they didn't answer the questions directly and they went over time. ... Sometimes they ran over and ignored me ... So what? I mean, it isn't about my power, my control or whatever. It was about what the candidates were doing, what they were talking about and what impression they were leaving with the voters. That's what this is about. It's not about how I felt about things. There were several minutes in the middle of the debate where I just backed off and they just talked. And I thought those were the magic moments."

WASHINGTON POST

OBAMA WINS OHIO RULING

A federal appeals court on Friday sided with President Obama's campaign and said that if Ohio allows military voters to cast ballots in the three days leading to Election Day, it must extend the same opportunity to all voters. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit said the state had not shown why voting during the Saturday-Sunday-Monday period should be offered to only one group of voters. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, a Republican, said the state would announce Monday whether it intended to appeal the decision. It could ask the full appeals court to reverse the decision, with the Supreme Court as the last resort.

WASHINGTON POST

VOTE GROUP DRAWS SCRUTINY

A Maryland congressman has opened an investigation into a group that has tried to remove thousands of voters from registration rolls across the nation. The inquiry by Rep. Elijah Cummings, a Democrat, is being started a week after Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., urged the Justice Department to enforce voting rights laws, citing a Los Angeles Times article detailing attempts by an Ohio offshoot of the group, True the Vote, to strike 2,100 students and others from voting rolls. Founder Catherine Engelbrecht, a Texas Tea Party leader, has said the group is trying to prevent election fraud and clean up voter registration rolls.

LOS ANGELES TIMES

PROTEST OR HATE LANGUAGE?

The debate on whether lawn chairs with the president's name on them and hanging from trees are references to Clint Eastwood's "empty chair" rant at the Republican National Convention -- or symbolic lynchings of the first U.S. black president -- now spans the country. A white plastic chair suspended above a yard in Camas, Wash., is the latest exhibit. Like the others before it, including in Austin, Texas, and Centreville, Va., the chair is marked "No-Bama." Critics have said they are a reference to the nation's ugly history of mob executions targeting blacks; the chair-stringers say they're innocent replays of the jokes spinning off Eastwood's address.

LOS ANGELES TIMES

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