Monday, October 12, 2015

THE PRAIRIE EDITOR: The Democrats Finally Debate

The small and evidently relatively weak field of Democratic
candidates for president in 2016 are finally going to take to the
TV stage for their first debate. The most exciting personality
among them, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, will have his
first televised confrontation with frontrunner Hillary Clinton,
and that seems to be the major draw to an otherwise ho-hum
event that CNN has shortened, fearing a small audience that
might swiftly become even smaller.

There will be five hopefuls on the stage, including former
Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, former Rhode Island
Governor/Senator Lincoln Chaffee, and former Virginia
Senator Jim Webb. Missing from the debate will be the only
major Democratic candidate who yet might run, Vice President
Joe Biden.

In the current cycle, thanks to their two debates which already
took place, the Republicans have dominated the free television
air waves with their large and controversial field of candidates.
Several Democratic Party leaders have called for more
Democratic TV debates, but the liberal party chair Debbie
Wasserman-Schultz has refused to schedule them, purportedly
to protect her friend Mrs. Clinton. Two DNC vice chairs,
including former Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, have been
rebuffed by the DNC chair for advocating more debates.

In advance, whatever political fireworks are likely to occur will
arise between Mr. Sanders and Mrs. Clinton, but Mr. O’Malley
will probably have his last opportunity to rise in the polls occur
in the debate. He might attempt something dramatic to put
himself into a more prominent place in the campaign. Mr. Webb,
the lone centrist in the field, has found it difficult to get traction
in a party moving decidedly to the left. In spite of his resume,
Mr. Chaffee has impressed no one with his campaign so far.

It is likely that it will be the absentee potential candidate, Mr. Biden,
who will loom largest behind the first debate, but Senator Sanders,
a self-described socialist, has shown considerable ability to draw
crowds, media attention and growing poll numbers, and he  could
steal the show.

Copyright (c) 2015 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.

No comments:

Post a Comment