Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Second Presidential Debate

The format for the second Presidential debate is the town hall. The town hall format allows everyday voters an opportunity to ask questions of the two major party candidates. The moderator in this format is there to ensure that the two candidates do answer the question without trying to sidestep the question. Unfortunately the cynic in me doesn't believe that the questions being asked by the undecided voters of Hoffstra University will be that tough. I suspect a lot of softball's will be thrown up.

Now the debate is to focus on foreign policy which unfortunately is not on the top five issues on the minds of Ameicans. The last Presidential debate President Obama allowed Governor Romney to rule the debate despite talking for an additional 4 minutes. During the Vice Presidential debate, Vice President Biden was more on the offensive although some of the Biden bite was lost on his snickering, smiling and overall condescending demeanor. The question is will President Obama come out "swinging"?

Both candidates need to be cautious in the town hall format as they attempt to make their points and counter their opponents as to not alienate the audience. In the past two the debates the moderator played the role of directing the conversation but in the town hall it will be the audience that will be setting the stage via the questions they ask. With the race a virtual tie and Governor Romney closing the gaps in the swing states it will be critical to the re-election of President Obama that he have a strong showing.

What will constitute a strong showing for President Obama? At the same time, Governor Romney cannot sit back and allow President Obama to dictate the tone and tenor of the debate while not looking stiff and lacking apathy for the audience. What will Governor Romney need to do for a strong showing tonight?

Unfortunately I won't be able to catch the majority of the debate and will have to rely on replays and pundits to help determine the outcome. If I were in the room and was chosen to ask a question, I'd ask:

Are you going to continue the imperialistic agenda that the United States has undertaken since participating in World War II?