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(Not) Taking a Stance

September 28, 2007

In response to mschellentrager’s most recent post:

Although disappointing, it comes as no surprise to me that the Democratic presidential candidates did not take a stronger stance on bringing our troops home from Iraq. It is no longer common for candidates to take such strong and definite stands during debates, partially because the strict structure does not encourage candidates to. The small time frame given to answer questions and respond is hardly long enough to explain a plan to withdraw troops.

This has been the topic I have continually revisited these past three weeks. Although other people in the class might not realize it, they are connecting present day politics to the Lincoln-Douglas debates, as “mschellentrager” did. Many people have a problem with the way debates are run and the information that the American public receives from them. Debates are no longer used as a platform to introduce all of a candidate’s plans if elected. There are additional television interviews, newspaper stories, even Wikipedia entries. I lump the debates into the same category as all of these.

Debates have lost their prominence in the United States. Candidates do not feel the need to take firm stands on issues, just stay in the middle ground. Debate structure needs to be revamped before we will see politicians stating their opinions more authoritatively.

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