It won’t be a debate, but John McCain and Joe Biden will oppose each other Thursday night on national television.
The senators, on opposite sides of the presidential contest, will be the featured guests on TV’s top late-night talkfests — "The Late Show with David Letterman" on CBS and NBC’s "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno."
The attention-grabber is McCain’s appearance with Letterman. The Republican presidential candidate has been a guest on "The Late Show" on 12 previous occasions, but this time is different.
McCain upset Letterman last month when he canceled his scheduled appearance due to the economic crisis. At first, the host understood the decision, but after seeing McCain interviewed by CBS News anchor Katie Couric he decided to no longer accept the McCain camp’s statement that “this wasn’t a night for comedy.”
Letterman commented, “Now I’m feeling like an ugly date,” according to The Associated Press. He has railed against McCain on the air ever since the perceived snub.
The telecast will mark McCain’s first visit with Letterman since he accepted the GOP nomination. Whether the two sometimes-cantankerous personalities clash or reconcile promises to provide compelling viewing.
For his part, vice-presidential candidate Biden’s verbal sparring with Leno likely will include his reaction to Wednesday night’s final debate between his Democratic ticket topper, Barack Obama, and McCain.
Biden’s thoughts on his running-mate rival, Sarah Palin — a frequent target of late-night jokesters since her emergence — could be part of the mix as well.
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