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24 July 2007 @ 09:37 am
Thoughts on the debate?  
My (very brief) thoughts behind the cut.

Was the CNN/You Tube Debate a Revolution, or a Media Stunt?

I was going to post last night after the debate, but then...I didn't. It was good to sleep on it overnight though, because my kneejerk reaction to it was that it was all hype, and not much substance. I do, however, think some candidates proved much stronger in this format than others.

The questions were, for the most part, very smart, and the format for asking, I felt, was quite effective. Instead of having a journalist ask the same tired questions, we saw real people, with real issues, challenging these candidates to look them in the eye and tell the truth. Some did - or seemed to, while others tended toward the same standard talking points (Chris Dodd). Both Obama and Edwards seemed to thrive in this format, though Obama's clear lack of experience came through a few times, particularly in regards to foreign relations. He was all but trampled by the more experienced Clinton, and even by Biden.

There were, of course, the fringe candidates. Mike Gravel came off as a bit loony, and, though his passion can not be questioned, he was far too focused on Campaign funding - not really the hottest topic with voters.

Dennis Kucinich, who is always entertaining, would have no trouble getting elected here in San Francisco...but he's clearly far too liberal for middle America. (At one point, Kucinich noted that there was no candidate (physically) on his left - Anderson Cooper then wryly replied that they couldn't find anyone to put there.) Kucinich was the only candidate to come out in favor of full gay marriage, while the rest of the candidates clung to the more moderate 'civil union' stance. A brave move, but one that does not sit well with a lot of people outside of major urban areas.

The (non) answers regarding Iraq were frustrating at best. No one really seems to know what to do - they just don't want to be seen as aligned with Bush (who does)? Overall, the answers were disappointing, but then, I'm not really sure what I wanted them to say.

That being said, nothing new really seemed to be revealed here. You can change the way the questions are asked, but in the end, the Candidates were going to answer them the same way.

It was the videos, and the people in them, that really shined - the messages from the candidates paled in comparison. It will be interesting to see how the Republicans respond to the format - and whether they will learn anything from watching this debate.

If anything, this new format got people watching the debates. Hopefully, it means that we'll make a more informed choice next year - hopefully it means that, in the end, the best man (or woman!) will win.
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
captain benjamin franklin pierce: ppl; ol' blue eyesspybarbie on July 24th, 2007 04:48 pm (UTC)
I think Kucinich is trying too hard to be relevant. His "text Congress" bit got old after awhile.

And Gravel is just kinda batshit crazy. He's hilarious, though. I think that his heart is in the right place, but that he won't stand a chance of getting anywhere near the nomination... but the same goes for a lot of these candidates.

I don't know, I agree with you on the questions and the format - I think it was a more voter-friendly format, and that is always a good thing.
sparklespennilesspoet17 on July 24th, 2007 04:59 pm (UTC)
Kucinich is just overall totally annoying - and yeah, that text thing was so ridiculous. Does he think he's on American Idol? Ugh.

Gravel was kind of cracking me up, but also making me a little bit sad. He was so pissed that he didn't get more airtime, but its like, 'oh, dude, no one's voting for you.' Poor delusional bastard.

captain benjamin franklin pierce: hp; george bush says...spybarbie on July 24th, 2007 05:20 pm (UTC)
His campaign video was so bad. I think it's smart to court the young vote, but proving that you know what texting is? Just isn't getting you anywhere except to the point where you annoy the hell out of voters.

I understand his point though, because it really hasn't been fair. He wants these debates to be a launching point for a real, serious, campaign with an actual, honest to God shot at the nomination (which he's never going to have). But, at the same time - Americans only want to hear from the candidiates that they've heard of before, the ones that are serious candidates for the nomination.
♣  shiksa feminista  ♣: politics // ballcrushers for clinton; tdredhotpolkadots on July 24th, 2007 07:01 pm (UTC)
I personally thought the whole YouTube concept was more revolution and less hype.

While CNN was definitely jonesing for hype, they can't ignore the fact that this kind of debate might become part of future debate formats -- which I think is awesome.

The only thing I'm a little skeptical about is that CNN execs still got to make the final choice on the videos shown. I would've liked to have seen a couple of the questions voted on by viewers or something, but overall, no real complaints from me.

As a Clinton supporter, I was very proud of her comments on diplomacy, being a woman candidate, and who really won in 2000 ;p I know I'm more than a little bias, but I thought she won the debate.

However, I thought Biden and Edwards held their own, and I continue to be put-off by Mike Gravel's spastic comments, haha.

I told Claire in comments to my blog that I seriously can't wait for the GOP to have to handle this debate format -- they'll be answering to mostly young people, and hopefully young people will ask them about things other than taxes and evolution, haha.
sparkles: Other || World Road Signspennilesspoet17 on July 24th, 2007 07:23 pm (UTC)
I agree that the format may be here to stay - and if it keeps people watching, then I'm all for it!

nd hopefully young people will ask them about things other than taxes and evolution, haha.

LMFAO! Oh, I really hope they do!