I didn't pick this up, but blogger Brad DeLong did. He points to an April 26, 1982 Time article, which noted:
In an interview with Pravda, the Communist Party newspaper, Brezhnev rejected President Reagan's proposal, made earlier this month, that the two leaders meet informally in New York this June after the disarmament talks at the United Nations General Assembly...Pravda? you snort. The official newspaper of the Soviet Communist Party? Now who are you gonna believe: McCain or Pravda? Except that the original request by Reagan was to meet on US soil in June. Brezhnev, who had been ill for weeks, suggested a neutral summit later in the fall to give their leader time to recover. The White House held out hope that the meeting in June would still happen. Therefore, the Soviet account was accurate. Reagan was eager and willing to meet with Brezhnev, maybe even "without preconditions."
This means that McCan't, who at the time this was going on was running for his first Senate term, did not have the facts straight last Friday. He was ignorant. Yglesias believes that such
ignorance is a form of dishonesty. He had to have looked up the facts, or at least had his aides do it, in order to make that point. So he would have known those facts at the debate. If he was just winging it, then what does that say about his interest in telling the truth to voters that he wouldn't bother to be factually accurate in a debate?