VP Debate Rules Set

21 Sep

The format for the VP debate between Gov. Palin and Sen. Biden has been set according to negotiators for both campaigns.

The structure will include shorter answers for Palin and lecterns for Biden.

Both sides appear to have gotten what they wanted for the Oct. 2 vice-presidential debate at Washington University in St. Louis.

Republicans wanted to limit the amount of time for answers as a way to aid Gov. Sarah Palin. The contenders will get 90 seconds to respond to questions followed by a two-minute discussion period of each topic.

Moderator Gwen Ifill of PBS can ask questions on any topic.

The presidential candidates will have two minutes to respond to questions followed by a five-minute discussion period.

Democrats wanted lecterns to be used in the debate as opposed to the setup used in the 2000 and 2004 v.p. debates where candidates sat close to each other behind the same table. Cheney had the upper hand in both debates, said several Democrats involved in the debate process, in part because the setting made it difficult — if not impossible — for Lieberman and Edwards to go after Cheney aggressively. Whether that was because of the setting or because the two Democrats wanted to avoid confrontation is a matter still disputed by participants.

source: Washington Post

Update: Today a story of a potential conflict of interest involving the debate moderator Gwen Ifill emerged. Gwen Ifill has a pro-Obama book coming out in January that would directly benefit in sales if Obama were to win the election. Some are questioning how objective anyone could really be when their future book sales are connected to the ultimate election success of Obama/Biden.

Many are urging voters to call the Commission on Presidential Debates and “stop this madness now!” A quick call or email to the commission is as easy as this:

Ask the Commission on Presidential Debates if Gwen Ifill will be removed due to conflict of interest: 202-872-1020.

And here’s the e-mail address of Janet H. Brown, Executive Director of the Debates Commission: jb@debates.org


3 Responses to “VP Debate Rules Set”

  1. and so it goes October 1, 2008 at 3:17 pm #

    I hope Iffil asks the type of questions that will force the candidates to go beyond talking points, so that they need to draw on past experience or knowledge.

    I know Biden is often long winded, and after so many years, he has a closet full of verbal gaffes. But nobody can doubt his body of knowledge.

    Palin, who can’t name one magazine that she reads, not even TIME or NEWSWEEK … is an empty shell, who can respond with talking points she’s been cramming for the past month, but I doubt she understands them enough to build on them.

  2. Marjorie Lascoe October 1, 2008 at 5:13 pm #

    Has anyone asked Obama, Biden, or McCain what they read? No. It’s because it’s not a question they would bother a man with only the woman.

    I can’t knock Palin for not dignifying that question with a detailed answer. Why should she list every subscription or magazine she has ever read. It was obviously a backhanded way to say she’s dumb- to imply it.

    I don’t see anyone implying Obama is dumb. He’s had less work experience than Palin, but because he went to Harvard, it’s OK?

    A lot of bright people who have great skills do not go to Ivy League schools. It’s time for the snobbery to end.

    We have a woman who has worked her way up and done increadibly well or she wouldn’t be there in the first place. I see no reason to continue to push the ‘dumb female’ angle.

    Shame Katie Couric, shame on you!

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