Between now and November, President Obama should debate both John Boehner, the House Republican leader, and Mitch McConnell, the GOP leader in the Senate. Their confrontations, televised and during prime time, would certainly get the attention of voters and make clear what the stakes in the election are.I disagree. Even between presidential candidates, debates often amount to little more than the exchange of talking points. Recall Sarah Palin, up-front, stated she felt free to ignore the questions posed to the candidates and talk about whatever she wanted. To allow people like Boehner and McConnell to debate the President would elevate their importance and allow them to spew nonsense in the President's face while granting legitimacy to that nonsense, while the President would be expected to respond with the decorum required of his office. Also, as if it needs to be said, Obama's not presently up for reelection.
If Dionne wants somebody to debate Boehner, the proper counterpart is Nancy Peolosi. And for McConnell, of course, Harry Reid.