|JACKSONVILLE, FL - JANUARY 26: Audience members listen to the Republican presidential candidates debate at the University North Florida (Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)|
This year, after watching all the Republican primary debates, I began to wonder if debates serve a purpose anymore.
It seemed like each debater had a pre-scripted answer ready for each question asked. If the answer wasn’t complete enough for the moderator they would ask the question again and pretty much get the same scripted answer. Then there were other times where the candidates let the moderator know they didn’t care what question was asked, they would say what they want. Basically this turns the debate into just memorized talking points or one big campaign ad. Allowing this in a debate also seems to bring out the worst in some supporters in the audience. Debates should not allow audience participation. These are not sporting events, these are times for the public to gather information.
Debates should show us how candidates feel on important issues and how fast they can react and think on their feet. If candidates refuse to answer questions, then why bother to have debates at all?
Debaters should agree to answer questions and stay on topic and save the mudslinging for their campaign ads.