Pepperdine professors to debate election

A Malibu resident learns how to use a fire extinguisher against a contained blaze at the Fire Expo Saturday. Photo by Lisa Kestenbaum / TMT

Two leading conservative minds in the nation, Douglas Kmiec and Robert Kaufman, will square off Oct. 13 at Pepperdine University’s Smothers Theatre to debate the issues of the presidential race. Despite being a Catholic conservative who opposes abortion, Kmiec, of Pepperdine University’s School of Law, is in support of the Barack Obama/Joseph Biden campaign. Kaufman, who teaches at the university’s School of Public Policy, favors the John McCain/Sarah Palin ticket.

Kmiec served as head of the Office of Legal Counsel for presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. He was in the national news earlier this year when a Roman Catholic priest denied him communion because of his support for Obama. Kmiec detailed the reasons for his support of Obama in a book published last month by Overlook Press titled “Can a Catholic Support Him? Asking the Big Question About Barack Obama.”

Kaufman is a political scientist specializing in American foreign policy and national security. He wrote about his support for George W. Bush’s foreign policy in a book published last year by The University Press of Kentucky titled “In Defense of the Bush Doctrine.” He has written two other books and numerous articles for scholarly publications as well as newspapers and magazines. Kaufman assisted President Richard M. Nixon with the writing of Nixon’s final book. He is currently in the research phase of a biography on President Ronald Reagan.

Among the issues that will be included in the debate are abortion, gay marriage, illegal immigration, judicial appointments, American foreign policy, the economy, health care, the environment and terrorism.

The debate is free and will take place from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. More information can be obtained by calling 310. 506.4000. The Malibu Times is a cosponsor of the event.