November 15, 2010

Let's have 50 or 60 presidential primary debates

Starting in the spring (2011) the Republicans are having their first candidates debate at the behest of Nancy Reagan's invite. That's a full 18+ months prior to the next presidential election, and that's an awfully long lead time. Beyond being unnecessary, even to political junkies, how meaningful could this actually be?

Is something a candidate says next spring going to be valid 18 months later? Sure, for some things but won't some sound bites be nothing more than gotcha points being made available for the Democrats? Wouldn't that be especially true if a candidate opts to change a position?

Another point to consider is the redundancy factor. Given the relatively hardened positions of those at this point on their political pathway it's pretty likely debate #4 is going to sound 99% the same as debate #22.

On the other hand, there are other considerations. It does give the candidates a chance to hone their debating skills. With 50 or 60 debates the candidates should all be ready to take on a debate of Buckleyan caliber. But it just might give certain candidates more time to hone their skills.

It also gives us political junkies a chance to ferret out who is serious early on. For the GOP, taking the early race seriously is important. Look what happened to McCain, Guiliani and Thompson in the 2008 primaries. All of their candidacies were turned around based on their early success or failure. This would provide a good indicator of how seriously the candidates are considering 2012. Not in the debate? You must not be too sure about the you candidacy.

Nevertheless, there isn't much value to the public, the GOP or the candidates in doing this, this early. It almost seems as if the idea is to fill a political void, or dead spot. That's no reason to start the Democrats on their talking points. That is, not unless it's designed to throw them off the trail of the real positions or real contenders. Now that sort of political misdirection is something worth tuning in to see.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Disagreement is always welcome. Please remain civil. Vulgar or disrespectful comments towards anyone will be removed.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This