By a show of hands, how many of you believe in global warming?
Coke or Pepsi?These are game shows, not serious debates.get rid of the moderators and have Brian Lamb come out. Introduce the candidates and then have them proceed to debate one topic. That's how Lincoln and Douglas did it in 1858. Everyone whines about not having them.
Let's have them.
First, there were seven Lincoln-Douglas debates in even Illinois towns from August 15, 1858, to October 25, 1858, ahead of the general election for U.S. Senate. The issue was slavery. These were formal but not always polite affairs that lasted three hours. The audiences hooted and hollered at various points in the debate.
These were courtroom arguments as both men had been circuit lawyers traveling from town to town dispensing justice. Their format worked like a prosecutor and defense lawyer making their closing arguments.The first speaker spoke for an hour, the opposition spoke for 90 minutes, and then the first speaker spoke again for 30 minutes.
This was a verbal boxing match with Douglas portraying Lincoln as a wild-eye radical who believed in racial equality. Lincoln portray Douglas as a nutball who wanted slavery spread throughout the United States; once it had, as slavery was legal in all 13 colonies.
By 1858, Lincoln was an established lawyer who handled cases for railroads, having been the trial lawyer for the Rock Island Railroad case which set the precedent that if you crash your steamboat into a railroad bridge, you not the railroad company are to blame. Incredibly, we have rolled it back somewhat as trial lawyers play the commas and semi-colons to empty every penny and even the lint from the deep pockets of corporate America.
But I digress. Let the 10 candidates in the first tier and the second tier debate one question: What should we do about illegal immigration?
Then let each speak for five minutes until the last candidate, who gets to speak for 10, and then have the rest respond for five minutes each.
That would take 100 minutes. Throw in intros and commercial breaks and you have two hours of television, and better insights into how these candidates would do in the general election and how each would govern.