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Republican YouTube Debate Back On

Drudge reported it a little while ago but didn't include a link. Well, here's the link from the Washington Post:

This just in: The Republican CNN/YouTube debate, in limbo for the past few weeks, is on again.

But Mitt Romney, who won Saturday's Iowa straw poll and has criticized the debate format, has yet to commit to the Nov. 28 event.

Romney, the lone GOP holdout, has posted more videos on his YouTube channel (283 as of Sunday afternoon) than any other presidential candidate, Republican or Democrat. But he has resisted the debate, in which videotaped questions are submitted through YouTube. In an interview with Manchester Union Leader, Romney said, "I think the presidency ought to be held at a higher level than having to answer questions from a snowman."

That drew a video response from Billiam, the snowman who questioned the Democrats on global warming last month in their YouTube debate. This time, he riffed on another Romney quote from the campaign: "Lighten up slightly."

Sources at CNN said the debate, co-hosted with the Republican Party of Florida, will be held at the Mahaffey Theatre in St. Petersburg. Steve Grove, head of news and politics at YouTube, said that more than 1,100 videos have been submitted, and the popular video-sharing site will allow YouTube users to upload their videos until Nov. 27.

The process is the same as the Democratic debate in Charleston, S.C.: Questions can't be more than 30 seconds long, and CNN's political team, led by Washington bureau chief David Bohrman, will select the 30 or so videos for the debate. CNN drew some criticism for including the Billiam question, but Bohrman, the mastermind of the YouTube-CNN marriage, defended the call in a recent interview with The Washington Post: "It was a really good question, and it was funny. I think running for president is serious business ... but we do want to know that the president has a sense of humor."

I understand Romney's concern about the debate coming off more as a joke than a serious debate about the issues, but the Republican candidates have to walk a fine line here. They can't be perceived as being too stuffy or stiff because that plays to the stereotype of Republicans. However, they can't allow themselves to be on video tape coming off as looking ridiculous either. This harkens back to the days of Nixon/Humphrey when Laugh In asked Humphrey to do a "Sock it to me" line but he said no. Although Nixon was reluctant, he agreed to it, and as a result endeared himself to millions of Americans. It's still probably one of the most famous six seconds on television.


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Comments (7)

So... how fast will the "'r... (Below threshold)
marc:

So... how fast will the "'rethuglians are pussies' crowd amend their original thoughts when it was assumed this debate wasn't going to happen.

They were all in high dudgeon then all the while deflecting attention from their childish Fox boycott.

Soooo.... where are all you guys, it's been an hour since this was posted?

They're waiting for the Off... (Below threshold)
C-C-G Author Profile Page:

They're waiting for the Official DailyKos/DU/NYT/TNR talking points to be published.

Only a lefty like Mark woul... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Only a lefty like Mark would think a question from a snowman is at the level of presidential status. Or how many questions will be chosen that will start with "Bush has ruined______, what will you do for me?" Personally I do not think the candidates should run from anyone like the demo's do with Fox News. ww

Wow marc. An anticipatory ... (Below threshold)
JFO:

Wow marc. An anticipatory whine? That's a new one.

JFO:That's a n... (Below threshold)
marc:

JFO:

That's a new one.

No that's a fact. And I wouldn't be in the least bit surprised you chimed in right along with Lee in the thread dealing with this topic.

But you're far from worth the effort to look.

Marc:So, you admit... (Below threshold)
JFO:

Marc:

So, you admit you whine all the time. There might just be a sliver of hope for you.

All the candidates need to ... (Below threshold)

All the candidates need to do is retain their dignity. If there are stupid questions presented - and it's a safe bet there will be, doncha think? - then they should direct their ire to the CNN committee who chose it: "THIS is the best you could find out of 20,000 questions? No wonder your ratings are falling like a rock!"

Still, the only reason it's "on" is because the Democrats did it and Republicans don't want to listen to their crap if we don't. Nothing was gained by their YouTube debate (except exposing Obama's ignorance of foreign affairs, which anyone with half a brain already knew about), and nothing will likely be gained by this one.

God forbid this atrocity becomes enshrined as a Presidential tradition, though. It doesn't take much to suck politicians into doing stupid things, however - note the baby-kissing and eating of odd local delicacies which already goes on, and the obligatory visits to Leno, Letterman, and Stewart.




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