Election Debates are Ineffective

Posted by | October 03, 2008 | politics | One Comment

Ordinary people have some idea what the once obscure term LIBOR means, according to a piece on Bloomberg. At the same time, VP candidate, Sarah Palin has recently shown that she: cannot name a US newspaper; a single Supreme Court decision apart from Roe vs Wade; where Gaza is or any impact the $700B might have on the budget.

Today’s Journal, a place where interns know what LIBOR is, leads with the headline: “Biden, Palin Clash on Taxes, Iraq in Sharp Edged Debate“.

How can a TV debate model that fails to smoke out someone who does not understand high school level geography or politics become the de facto forum for voters to asses Presidential and VP candidate ability?

Josh Marshall points out that US TV debates are not actually debates at all, there is no follow up. In interviews with Couric, all of Palin’s knowledge gaps were revealed in simple specific follow up questions after responses that were pure waffle.

If you aren’t born here, in order to be able to vote, there is a method to smoke out people who don’t learn basic principals of the democracy. My wife recently obtained US citizenship, which requires answering questions about things that include the Supreme Court and its decisions.

Sarah Palin revealed in interview that she wouldn’t necessarily be able to pass a test required to vote, and yet a test of whether people should vote for her is described by the Wall Street Journal as ‘sharp’.

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