We can only hope the final presidential debate Monday provides less heat and more light than the previous two. Especially with regard to fiscal matters, the debates have so far not provided the substance and solutions that voters need and deserve to hear.

Our nation’s escalating deficits and debt represent the biggest threat to our national security, as I said in early 2007. Admiral Mike Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said much the same in 2010. So the topic of the third debate, foreign policy and national security, needs to include a frank discussion of fiscal issues.

For, as our economy weakens, so does our position in the world. It will eventually compromise both our national security and domestic tranquility if not effectively addressed. Both our allies and adversaries recognize this, and we need to take action.

It’s time to see what type of leadership ability both candidates have in this critical area. Because it will require extraordinary presidential leadership and bipartisan cooperation if we expect to avoid a U.S. debt crisis.

The first step should be for the candidates to start providing substantive answers to serious questions instead of talking generalities and attacking each other. There are still many topics that need to be addressed and answers that the public needs to hear before Election Day. Consider: