In an unusual Saturday announcement, the Obama campaign has declared that the candidate will not commit to any more debates before December 10 beyond those already scheduled. Articulating a feeling that I suspect is shared with many campaigns (D and R), David Plouffe writes, “We simply cannot continue to hopscotch from forum to forum,” though he couches it in the language of the candidate’s themes: “and run a campaign true to the bottom up movement for change that propelled Barack into this race.”
In real terms, this means Obama will not participate in debates sponsored by the AARP, the League of Conservation Voters, and the Congressional Black Caucus. His absence also means that other candidates have some cover if they, too, want to spend less time waiting for a question to be directed to them and more time actually talking.
Mark Halperin’s take is here.
UPDATE: The spinning has already started. A source close to the Clinton campaign fired a zinger off quickly: “So he’ll meet with dictators but not the black caucus or seniors in Iowa?”
UPDATE: The Obama campaign points out that they WILL be doing the CBC debate, as it fails outside the “sanctioning” period, in January.