August 19th, 2009
09:40 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 8/19/09

Tonight, security remains a top concern as Afghanistan holds its second-ever presidential election against a backdrop of escalating violence. President Hamid Karzai is competing with more than three dozen challengers–including two women– for the votes of 17 million registered Afghans. The polls open just hours from now, at 10:30 p.m. eastern.

Health care reform is also a major storm on our radar. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs today denied reports that the Obama administration is considering pushing health care reform through Congress without any Republican support—the so-called nuclear option. Tonight, we’ll try to get a firm handle on a simple question: Is there any chance, at this point in the bitter debate, of bi-partisanship?

Want to know what else we're covering? Read EVENING BUZZ

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)

Filed under: Live Blog • T1
soundoff (199 Responses)
  1. karen swanson

    i saw a program the other night that getting children into school in afganistan is the answer. that will cost alot less than the us miltary, fighting the taliban?

    August 19, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  2. Isabel • Brazil

    @ David, Indiana

    Security is a necessary condition for free and fair elections, the current situation could affect that.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  3. Sandra Robertson, GA

    Hi Anderson. Congressman Barney Frank has the right to speak his mind just as all citizens do, and he did so matter-of-factly without yelling.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  4. Linda-Portland, OR

    why has health care become a democrat vs republican issue?..shouldn't it be a human/fellow American issue?

    August 19, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  5. Marian

    There will probably always be a certain amount of violence in Iraq. Perhaps if the US has never invaded Iraq in the first place there would not be loss of American lives.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  6. Barbara A. Marion, IA

    I agree with Ander of Lauderhill, Fl. too. I think we should let the Democrats handle this themselves, but then it could backfire. People are getting so upset over this and most of them are acting on misinformation.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  7. GARY

    This is all so crazy..the Dems are fighting to put an overly expensive paint job on the family car – and the damn thing doesn't even run!

    Fix the car – not the paint job. Work to lower the cost of care itself – not the cost of the insurance. It is madness!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  8. Lori, IL

    Yeah for Barney Frank! Saw much more of his Town Hall today and he started out by saying no one benefited from yelling - At one point someone asked him about something in the proposed bill and he read directly from the bill - they still didn't want to believe him. It's time for the Dems to go alone if the Repubs don't want to work together on health care.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  9. Kathy Chicago

    We all agree that we need reform, but let's slow down and do it right. We need to cap malpractice, lower cost and still provide service for all. There is a lot that can be trimmed. It should be for the people, not Obama.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  10. Anthonia-(Bay Area)California

    Heeey Y'all! Happy Wednesday 🙂

    I seriously cant remember if the health care system during the bush admin. was this bad..?

    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  11. Bill-Taiwan

    How much money has Grassley taken from insurance?

    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  12. Marilyn

    Using Nazi and Holocaust imagery to depict those with opposite political points of view denigrates the memory of those who died in the Shoah.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  13. Frank Brown

    Hello Anderson,

    When you come to Afghanistan, stop by to see us Americans.
    We work at Kabul International Airport on the ISAF/KAIA Base.



    August 19, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  14. Jennifer - Michigan

    I also enjoy watching the clips of Barney Frank – his demeanor is quite refreshing to be honest.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:16 pm |
  15. Heather - Spokane, WA

    I like Barney Frank! He should be the one doing all of the health care speeches. I could not agree more with him when he says that talking to these groups is like talking to a kitchen table, they are not listening and they wont allow anyone to talk.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:16 pm |
  16. lampe

    The Republicans don't have to compromise. It's The Dems show, so let them have at it. That way if it's a good plan the Dems will get all the credit, but if it fails they will also get all the blame.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:16 pm |
  17. David, Indiana

    Good evening Anderson, Erica, Isabel, everyone. Sorry to be a bit late, a little running around here this evening.

    Did Peter Bergen say that a 70% voter turnout would be enough to make the vote stick in Afghanistan? I am concerned about attacks that voters in that country might have to deal with. Perhaps as the Afghans get through the election they will have the chance to focus more intensely on rebuilding. The election is a vulnerable pt

    August 19, 2009 at 10:15 pm |
  18. starr, formerly known as vincent

    I Loved watching the clips of the meeting with Barney Franks!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:15 pm |
  19. gayle mccauley malden,mass.

    Greetings to All! The President a Nazi? Did I hear that right?

    August 19, 2009 at 10:15 pm |
  20. LorenaR

    HOORAY for Barney Frank! i want to make sure i iive on HIS planet!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:14 pm |
  21. Isabel • Brazil

    It makes political sense to opposition stops the reform, but at the same time is not an attitude of more accurate if we look at all.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:14 pm |
  22. Lori, IL

    Can't wait for the week of reporting from Afghanistan -

    August 19, 2009 at 10:14 pm |
  23. Lisa A. Philadelphia, PA

    @Megan Dresslar I agree too, but is there any government or any other group that can achieve this?

    August 19, 2009 at 10:13 pm |
  24. Megan Dresslar - Shoreline, WA

    I hope you, Michael and Dr. Sanjay will fly to Afghanistan next 2 weeks to go, I am praying for you safety trip....... Good luck and Take care.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:13 pm |
  25. Andre, Lauderhill, FL

    That democrat only plan is the way to go. If Republicans wont compromise, just get around them.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:13 pm |
  26. LorenaR

    it's fun to watch Michael Ware; he's very theatrical = in a good sense

    August 19, 2009 at 10:12 pm |
  27. Kathy, Andover

    Go Barney Go! Now THAT'S the way to handle those idiots!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:11 pm |
  28. starr, formerly known as vincent

    Thank you Michael Ware & Peter Bergen. The combined knowledge of Iraq and Afganistan (&Pakistan) is very useful to us. These two gentlemen has risked much (as have many other reporters) to bring us the best information possible from those areas and we (family & friends) thank them gratefully.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:11 pm |
  29. Isabel • Brazil

    The threat of attacks and intimidation of voters still jeopardize the credibility of elections in a fragile democracy and recent.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:11 pm |
  30. LorenaR

    i can't ever forget the taliban destroying all those monumental statues and works of art, built by people a thousand years ago, destroyed forever by the Taliban. that, and their horribly repressive attitudes toward women, make me fear the taliban. i fear for the future of US interests if we insist on staying in that country.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:11 pm |
  31. Angela - Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

    Good evening everyone 😀 Hope everyone had a nice day!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  32. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Does Michael Ware ever get to go anywhere good? How about letting him report on a bikini contest in Hawaii, he deserves a break.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  33. Kathy Chicago

    Maybe Iraq needs to re-evaluate their plans for peace and winning the conflict.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:10 pm |
  34. Lisa A. Philadelphia, PA

    Good evening everyone ... what's going on in Afghanistan is very interesting, the way the world is swirling in the political climate is very interesting and eyebrow raising for those paying careful attention

    August 19, 2009 at 10:09 pm |
  35. Lori, IL

    I always enjoy Michael Ware on AC360 - he is very informative, explains things well and you can tell he is passionate about his reporting! Great job, Michael Ware!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:07 pm |
  36. Megan Dresslar - Shoreline, WA

    I do love both of Michael Ware and Peter Bergen, are right, we must stop violence too much power lost people to be hurt and kill to vote.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:07 pm |
  37. sally m

    Hi everyone, I think the dems should push healthcare bill thru
    that's why we elected them -to lead – NOW LEAD darn it.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:07 pm |
  38. starr, formerly known as vincent

    Hello Anderson, Erica & Team 360.

    Hellow fellow bloggers.

    I pray with all of my heart that the Afgan people will vote and Not be frightened away form the polls.

    This election is important for them. If they remain intimidated by the Taliban, the international community will give up on them and we may have a country that will belong to the Taliban, Al Queda & theives and thugs.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:06 pm |
  39. Paula, Colorado

    I hope for a safe election for the people in Afghanistan. They really are in need of a more stable, protected atmosphere.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:06 pm |
  40. Heather - Spokane, WA

    Its sad that there are people in this world that do not want others to have any choice in how they live or how they would like things to be in their own lives.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:06 pm |
  41. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    The military has been deployed in full force for these elections. A bigger concern is the growing violence in Iraq. Many predicted exactly this if a timetable was announced that didn't account for changing conditions on the ground.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:05 pm |
  42. Jennifer - Michigan

    I like to get Michael Ware's take on things there – he's very animated.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:03 pm |
  43. Megan Dresslar - Shoreline, WA

    Helloooo Anderson, Erica, Ed Henry, David Gergen and my friends Twitter/Facebook Bloggers!!!!!
    Happy Wednesday night!!! 🙂
    Afghanistan's people are so escalating violence on the street, I hope peopl are safe right now...... I am thinking about President Hamid Karzai will stay safe.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:03 pm |
  44. Jillonne, Largo, Florida

    Good evening Anderson, Erica and everyone! 🙂

    August 19, 2009 at 10:02 pm |
  45. Isabel • Brazil

    How will these elections tomorrow?
    I hope they are at peace!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:02 pm |
  46. Tiffany

    hello everyone

    August 19, 2009 at 10:01 pm |
  47. Isabel • Brazil

    Hello Anderson ... This time of day is mine alone and it's so good!

    Evening everyone: David (Indiana), 360 team and bloggers!

    August 19, 2009 at 10:00 pm |
  48. Ligia, San Jose/CA

    good evening everybody 🙂

    August 19, 2009 at 10:00 pm |
  49. Jennifer - Michigan

    Hi Anderson and Erica, Glad to be with you tonight.
    What a day of crazy news.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:00 pm |
  50. Heather - Spokane, WA

    evening Anderson and everyone.

    August 19, 2009 at 10:00 pm |
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