May 23, 2019


This week, ClickBack solicits the comments of Editorial Page readers on the role of moral considerations in selecting a president, the revelation that former presidential candidate John Edwards had an extra-marital affair, and what it means if Sens. John McCain and Barack Obama choose running mates with views that differ from theirs on abortion or other issues.

To participate, go to and click on the ClickBack logo and post your comment. Some reader comments posted at the ClickBack page may be featured on Friday’s OpEd page. Also, readers are encouraged to post their own ClickBack questions on the site.

On Saturday, candidates John McCain and Barack Obama answered questions from evangelical pastor Rick Warren. Are the answers important?

Sen. McCain said human rights begin at conception, while Sen. Obama reiterated his support for legalized abortion. The candidates also both claimed to be Christian, and stated their definitions of their faith. Does this sort of forum create a religious test for the White House? Are the morality and faith of a candidate relevant to the process by which voters choose the president? Do their beliefs come into play when they face crises? Or is this so much pandering to voters?

Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards admitted he had an extra-marital affair. Are politicians more prone to this moral failing?

The two-time presidential candidate, former senator and 2004 Democratic vice-presidential nominee confessed his affair to his wife and children, and when it was confirmed publicly, admitted it and expressed regret. Does the ego that convinces men they can be president also lead to infidelity? Or are politicians no different in this regard than other men? Should a candidate who divorced over infidelity be considered unfit for office?

If Sen. McCain or Sen. Obama choose running mates who differ with them on issues like abortion and gay marriage, will voters be less supportive?

Does a candidate’s running mate have to share his views on such powerful issues? If Sen. McCain wants to see abortion made illegal again, and his running mate believes it should stay legal, is this a mixed message to the electorate? Or are these issues less significant than tax policy, foreign policy, energy and budget management?

Go to to share your thoughts on these and other questions.

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