McCain favors UK-style question time for U.S. president
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Republican presidential candidate John McCain says he would take a page from the British government if elected and hold question-and-answer sessions with lawmakers.
“I will ask Congress to grant me the privilege of coming before both houses to take questions, and address criticism, much the same as the prime minister of Great Britain appears regularly before the House of Commons,” McCain told an audience Thursday.
Although U.S. presidents deliver annual “State of the Union” speeches to Congress at the start of each year, those formal addresses do not include a question-and-answer session.
McCain says exchanges like the sometimes raucous sessions in the British House of Commons are a way of holding leaders’ feet to the fire.
“When we make errors, I will confess them readily, and explain what we intend to do to correct them,” McCain said. He also reiterated a pledge to hold weekly news conferences, a change from President George W. Bush’s practice of holding them roughly once a month.
Is it a good idea to give lawmakers a chance to pepper the U.S. president with questions on a regular basis?
Photo credit: Reuters/Richard Clement (McCain speaks in Oregon)