What Do You Think? (Moderators)

How many debates have we watched now?  Between at least twenty Democratic debates, maybe half a dozen Republican debates (I know there’s more, but I haven’t watched them all); I would say I’ve watched between 25-30 debates this primary season.  One thing that really strikes me now that it’s very likely we’ve seen the last debate of the primary season and rarely if ever do the actual moderators get praise.

By contrast, most the time the moderators get panned.  The formats have largely been attacked by political junkies for being too restrictive.  Yet, funnily enough, I’ve also seen folks show their displeasure on how the debates changed to reflect narrowing fields and allowing more freedom of the candidates.

Josh Marshall goes after Tim Russert for a moment in the night when he latched on to Obama regarding Farrakhan’s endorsement and would not let go (Note: As I’ve mentioned before, I didn’t watch the whole debate, but I watched this clip, and I have to say, a masterful moment for Obama.  Hillary Clinton sounded way too much like a “story-topper” here, kinda like “Ooh… I had people endorse me that I didn’t want them to”, and was absolutely silly sounding when she started parsing the difference between reject and denounce, and through the whole episode Obama stayed cool, gracious, and even.  All under heavy and ridiculous fire).

The point is, given the number of debates that we’ve had this primary season, there have been scarce little praise for the moderators or the debate formats, so here’s where you tell me what you think.  How have the moderators done throughout this season?  Are there some you liked while others you didn’t?  What to you would be the best moderator?  How about Debate format?

Let me know, what do you think?

One Response to “What Do You Think? (Moderators)”

  1. Dynamic says:

    I’ve seen good and bad moderating, no doubt about it. I didn’t catch the Russert moderation this past debate but I’ve heard nothing good about it… by contrast, I thoroughly enjoyed Anderson Cooper’s moderation three or four debates ago.

    The people who watch debates are not the sort of people who want soundbyte politics, yet that’s exactly what Russert and his ilk revel in – it’s no wonder they receive negative responses every single time.

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