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(Politico)   "Group secretly trying to rework Presidential Debate rules." You hope for a Lincoln/Douglas slugfest, you prepare yourself for a Sarah Palin Fortune Cookie Hour   (politico.com) divider line 69
    More: Interesting, Commission on Presidential Debates, Presidential General Election Debates, Mike McCurry, Anita Dunn, independent candidates, Joel Benenson, Ron Klain  
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1322 clicks; posted to Politics » on 27 Nov 2013 at 8:37 AM (33 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-11-27 08:38:34 AM
Let me guess. Democrats always lose and Republicans always win? That's going to be the new rules?
 
2013-11-27 08:40:51 AM
"We were all sort of unhappy to be in Hempstead, N.Y., in October."

Who isn't?
 
2013-11-27 08:41:22 AM
how about we have them wired up to lie detectors and voice stress analyzers with visible results on screen? also it should give them a good electrical shock when they lie or dodge the question.
 
2013-11-27 08:44:19 AM
I'd be happy if they were asked real questions.
 
2013-11-27 08:44:20 AM
How about turning off the microphone of the candidate who is not responding.  Romney would have been comical in the first debate if he were ranting off mic.
 
2013-11-27 08:46:03 AM
"Rule 1. No winking."

malialitman.files.wordpress.com
 
2013-11-27 08:46:33 AM
Make em walk across a tightrope balancing an egg in a spoon on its big end or little end depending upon political party.
 
2013-11-27 08:46:45 AM

Muta: How about turning off the microphone of the candidate who is not responding.  Romney would have been comical in the first debate if he were ranting off mic.


He was comical ranting on mic.
 
2013-11-27 08:47:36 AM
What we have now could hardly be considered a "debate", but rather a series of two-minute talking point recitations.  Just throw out a question and let them have at it for 10 minutes.
 
2013-11-27 08:47:42 AM
Just allow longer answers and especially get better moderators. Bob Schieffer is incredibly awful.
 
2013-11-27 08:49:22 AM
What!  You suggest throwing away hours of free talking point distribution time?  I guess you want the campaigns to actually pay for this kind of brand support!
 
2013-11-27 08:51:14 AM
as long as she speaks in a fake Dominican accent, I'm good.
 
2013-11-27 08:51:20 AM

wingnut396: What!  You suggest throwing away hours of free talking point distribution time?  I guess you want the campaigns to actually pay for this kind of brand support!


yes, next question
 
2013-11-27 08:52:22 AM
BTW, "debates" are farking stupid personality contests with no value whatsoever no matter who hosts the things.
 
2013-11-27 08:52:25 AM
I wonder how much the debates matter in the end. I'd guess most folks have decided long before the debates who they support, and as currently structured the debates pose little danger of changing any minds. You either already know their positions, or vote the letter behind their name.
 
2013-11-27 08:53:04 AM
This is about ratings.  My guess is, the networks finally said, "Have all the debates you want, but we're under no obligation to show all of them."  Either they "punch it up" and make the debates more watchable, or they won't get that free talking point distribution time at all.
 
2013-11-27 08:53:20 AM

Cat Food Sandwiches: What we have now could hardly be considered a "debate", but rather a series of two-minute talking point recitations.  Just throw out a question and let them have at it for 10 minutes.


radio/tv interviews should be the same way, why are they always "almost out of time": on a 24 hour news network, wtf is that?
 
2013-11-27 08:53:44 AM
I hope one of the GOP primary debates has no questions and no turn-taking; just let all of them yell simultaneously for 90 minutes
 
2013-11-27 08:54:39 AM

bluenovaman: I'd be happy if they were asked real questions.


and I would be even happier if they then had to answer the question that was asked and not just roll over into talking points which skirt the question.
 
2013-11-27 08:56:18 AM

a_bilge_monkey: I wonder how much the debates matter in the end. I'd guess most folks have decided long before the debates who they support, and as currently structured the debates pose little danger of changing any minds. You either already know their positions, or vote the letter behind their name.


Well, there's always the chance of one of the participants letting slip an actual belief of theirs, thus cratering their political career.  That can be entertaining.
 
2013-11-27 08:57:30 AM
How about making them go through an application process like getting into college, that way Low Intellegence debaters like Sister Sarah , and Brothers Ted and Rand will actually have to meet a low bar of competency before trying to catapult their lame assed messages.
 
2013-11-27 08:58:40 AM

BunkoSquad: I hope one of the GOP primary debates has no questions and no turn-taking; just let all of them yell simultaneously for 90 minutes


it'd be like an all male version of the view
 
2013-11-27 08:58:43 AM
You know Lincoln/Douglas is just speech, then a longer speech by the other candidate, then a speech by the first candidate, right?
 
2013-11-27 09:00:06 AM
All you need is people that'd ask real questions and not let politicians dodge them. (Read: non-American journalists). Is have paid good money to watch someone hold Mittford's feet to the fire about his tax returns, Romneycare, specifics his amazing tax plan that let him cut trillions in taxes and increase the defense budget, etc.
 
2013-11-27 09:02:15 AM
I'd pay good money to see Presidential Debates consist entirely of responses in the form of Haiku poems.
 
2013-11-27 09:02:49 AM

JoePragmatist: All you need is people that'd ask real questions and not let politicians dodge them. (Read: non-American journalists). Is have paid good money to watch someone hold Mittford's feet to the fire about his tax returns, Romneycare, specifics his amazing tax plan that let him cut trillions in taxes and increase the defense budget, etc.



Get a moderator from the BBC. The accent alone would make all the candidates sound like idiots.
 
2013-11-27 09:05:03 AM

give me doughnuts: JoePragmatist: All you need is people that'd ask real questions and not let politicians dodge them. (Read: non-American journalists). Is have paid good money to watch someone hold Mittford's feet to the fire about his tax returns, Romneycare, specifics his amazing tax plan that let him cut trillions in taxes and increase the defense budget, etc.


Get a moderator from the BBC. The accent alone would make all the candidates sound like idiots.


Get Clive Anderson. He already has experience in directing professional clowns to make asses of themselves on camera for popularity points that don't matter.
 
2013-11-27 09:06:16 AM

Cat Food Sandwiches: What we have now could hardly be considered a "debate", but rather a series of two-minute talking point recitations.  Just throw out a question and let them have at it for 10 minutes.


How about we get informed moderators who ask decent follow up questions or make them answer the actual question instead of the question they want to answer
 
2013-11-27 09:06:29 AM
Maybe as a moderator we could get a REAL journalist from the BBC (there doesn't seem to be any left here in the U.S.) to aggressively interrupt and follow up with candidates who blatantly lie or spew talking points instead of answering the question.

It will never happen, of course.

==========================

I think televised debates are seriously overrated, anyway.

The issues we face in the modern world are complicated and nuanced.  The time crunch of a debate forces everyone to speak in VASTLY oversimplified slogans such as "Cut And Run" or "No New Taxes." The candidate who tries to be at least a little bit accurate and honest is at a HUGE disadvantage when trying to explain how the other guy is full of shiat AND giving a different point of view, all in the X number of seconds provided.


That said, televised debates are not totally worthless. If done right (which is rare nowadays) a televised debate can be a good indicator of how well the candidates are educated on the issues and how well they can think under pressure.

=====================================================

I'd like to see a series of "written" debates played out over several months-- The moderator gives a question, the candidates write out essays or op ed columns in response (citing their sources) and send them back to the moderator.  The moderator publishes the responses, appending a list of any falsehoods or distortions.  Then the candidates respond to each other's articles, and the cycle continues for several more rounds.

Of course, that would require reading, and thinking, and well, this IS America...

img.fark.net
 
2013-11-27 09:07:01 AM
I've never seen a presidential debate.  I've seen the things where they stand at podiums and recite scripted responses to questions they were given in advance, and then the country goes insane for the next few hours trying to declare who "won".
 
2013-11-27 09:07:02 AM

Pants full of macaroni!!: Well, there's always the chance of one of the participants letting slip an actual belief of theirs, thus cratering their political career. That can be entertaining.


Under the current format, the best we get, (granted it was classic), is "Please proceed, Governor"
 
2013-11-27 09:08:17 AM
Candidate #1: I hate Obamacare, gays, and abortions more than anyone.

Candidate #2: Nuh-uh!

Candidate #3: I hate all of those things more than anyone, plus I hate illegal immigrants and (takes out dog whistle, blows) welfare recipients. And I hate them more than all of you put together!

Candidates #1, #2, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8, #9, #10, #11, #12, #13, #14, #15, #16, #17, #18: NUH-UH!!!!!

Me: Meh, when's "Tosh.0" coming on?
 
2013-11-27 09:10:01 AM

Hobodeluxe: how about we have them wired up to lie detectors and voice stress analyzers with visible results on screen? also it should give them a good electrical shock when they lie or dodge the question.


Ineffective. Being a career politician makes you psychopathic enough that you can easily beat a lie detector. Hooking up someone like Romney to that machine would just create pages and pages of a perfectly straight line.
 
2013-11-27 09:10:44 AM
Changing the rules so you can finally win without changing your execution is classic American ExceptionalismTM
 
2013-11-27 09:11:56 AM
How about a formal debate with rules ala high school debate teams?

Policy debate, no LD. LD is for drama students who need to practice acting intelligent.
 
2013-11-27 09:16:01 AM
First off, wow!  Newton minnow is still alive.  He must be a hundred years old by now.

Regarding debates, now about no moderator?  These are supposed to be intelligent people.  Let 'em argue free form.  Even if they spend the entire time going back and forth about a single issue, it would be more beneficial than canned answers to obvious softball questions.
 
2013-11-27 09:17:03 AM
Real-time, in-debate fact-checking on big screens. Candidate's platform is lowered by one inch each time they are caught in a lie.
 
2013-11-27 09:17:14 AM
I have no problem with 2-minute answers as long as the question is structured in such a way that it can be answered in that time. Also, cut off their mic after the 2 minutes and any time they say, "I'd like to go back to something the other candidate said...".

Also change the setting to something like having them sit at a semi-circular table with the moderator in the center, and get rid of the crowd. Standing at a lectern in front of a crowd automatically puts them in campaign speech mode no matter how hard they might try to avoid it, so take them out of that setting. Also keep all of them on screen at all times (with TVs being 16:9 now it shouldn't be a problem) so we can see how they behave when they're not the center of attention.
 
2013-11-27 09:20:19 AM

Harvey Manfrenjensenjen: Also, cut off their mic after the 2 minutes and any time they say, "I'd like to go back to something the other candidate said...".


I hope you like the Gish Gallop, because this rule would make that tactic the reigning king of all debate tactics.
 
2013-11-27 09:21:32 AM
Turn the debates into a drinking contest for the candidates.  For answer that stays on point and actually addresses the question, everyone else has to take a shot.  If the answer turns into a talking point, the candidate has to take a shot.
 
2013-11-27 09:21:59 AM
Open Forum.  No scripted questions.  Audience composition should be as follows:

15% University Professors
15% Large business Leaders (Determined by annual revenue, not by # of employees)
10% Stay-at-home parents or single parents
10% Church Leaders
10% Kids between 6th and 12th grade
10% Union Leaders
10% Small Business owners (Determined by annual revenue, NOT by # of employees)
10% Primary and/or secondary school teachers
and 10% some drunk hobos they round up from under bridges (just for the comedy factor)

And prior to gaining a seat at the table, they have to pass a verbal test about basic math, science and history, to prove they're not as dumb as Palin or Ryan.
 
2013-11-27 09:23:25 AM

Wyalt Derp: Real-time, in-debate fact-checking on big screens. Candidate's platform is lowered by one inch each time they are caught in a lie.


I like the idea of a game show style score board in front of them to indicate a negative point for each lie.
 
2013-11-27 09:26:38 AM

monoski: Wyalt Derp: Real-time, in-debate fact-checking on big screens. Candidate's platform is lowered by one inch each time they are caught in a lie.

I like the idea of a game show style score board in front of them to indicate a negative point for each lie.


We could set up some Quiz Show style booths where both candidates are wearing giant earphones.
 
2013-11-27 09:27:32 AM

monoski: I like the idea of a game show style score board in front of them to indicate a negative point for each lie.


"Uh, Senator Paul, this is like golf, remember? You want the lower score."
 
2013-11-27 09:29:28 AM
I'd like to see the moderator keep asking the same question until the candidate actually delivers something that at least resembles a relevant answer... only then do you move on to the next question.
 
2013-11-27 09:30:27 AM

odinsposse: Hobodeluxe: how about we have them wired up to lie detectors and voice stress analyzers with visible results on screen? also it should give them a good electrical shock when they lie or dodge the question.

Ineffective. Being a career politician makes you psychopathic enough that you can easily beat a lie detector. Hooking up someone like Romney to that machine would just create pages and pages of a perfectly straight line.


the threat of electric shock should make that trickier. they're not used to instant consequence.
 
2013-11-27 09:33:30 AM
Yeah, it turns out that the more Republicans speak, the more independents are repelled. And women. And minorities. And young people. And smart people.
 
2013-11-27 09:34:09 AM
Was the author of the article trying to win the "Longest Article Conveying the Least Amount of Useful Information" Award?

Some people have met. They would like to discuss the possibility of making changes to the format of Presidential Debates. Or maybe not.
 
2013-11-27 09:35:04 AM
I'd also like to add a word association lightning round at the end.

OK Governor, you have 30 seconds.

Welfare: "Ni**ers"
President "Ni**er"
Iran: "Sand Ni**ers"...
 
2013-11-27 09:35:47 AM
Let them ask each other questions.

Give them both a buzzer that allows them to go to some panel of independent fact checkers.

Feed them both to lions at the end of the debate.

I think these would all be improvements.
 
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