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Less Trump, more facts?

January 28, 2016

The approximately 64% of polled Americans that are not supporting Donald Trump are hoping, although  not holding their collective breath, that tonight’s GOP debate will actually focus on issues and policies.

If that percentage is accurate, or at least more accurate than the past few presidential polls have been, that means that the percentage of registered voters who are either committed to other candidates or who have not made up their minds is about the same percentage reported as voting  in the 2008 election.

They deserve this debate to be for them.

Given the cash cow that is ol’ what’s-his-name, it’s doubtful but not impossible that they will get what they want.

Beyond all the Hollywood-style hype, anyone on that stage tonight has to take this opportunity to let America in general and Iowans in particular know exactly where they stand on issues and policies going forward.

With that in mind, it would be lovely if not one single candidate even thought about attacking any other GOP member, on or off the stage. Ultimately it isn’t going to be an all-Republican general election, so there has to be a better target than the guy or gal standing on either side of them.

Believe it or not, nobody really gives a hoot about whether Jeb hates Marco,  or how big a bribe a Cruz super PAC is willing to offer to get a venue to promote another slugfest. (Makes you wonder if it will be pay-per-view, doesn’t it?)

Voters have heard enough about what all these people have done in the past to ghostwrite the candidates’ biographies for them without ever conducting a single interview. Time to move along.

A big part of the formula will be the questions posed by the moderators. If they allow the candidates to give canned stump speeches or deliberately egg them on to attack each other then the debate will be as useless for differentiating between the candidates future impact on our lives as all the rest before it.

At the end of this debate if you don’t come away with a genuine understanding of the person or persons who interest you, it’s no one’s fault but the people in the debate hall.

From → op-ed

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