Next up: St. Louis and a much different format as President Bush and Senator Kerry come to Missouri Thursday to make final preparations for the Friday night debate at Washington University. University of Missouri-Columbia communications professor Mitchell McKinney expects Missourians to pay close attention to this debate as the news media focuses its attention on the second of the three presidential debates. Washington University will offer a town hall format. The Gallup Organization will choose about 100 St. Louis area residents to submit questions. The moderator will select citizens to stand ask their question, but rules forbid interaction with the candidates or any follow-ups as the two campaigns have agreed to more and more restrictions. McKinney says presidential campaigns have demanded tighter restrictions on the town hall format every election cycle since it debuted in 1992.
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