Did you watch last night's Republican presidential debate on CNN? The usual political junkies were tuned in and posting on Facebook including UVa's Larry Sabato who tweeted comments throughout along with Shaun Kenney and others.
Irritation set in early when moderator John King kept interrupting during responses ... it was a background grunt of sorts that could be heard as candidates were trying to respond to a question. I-r-r-i-t-a-t-i-n-g. And what's with the 30-second responses? Who can answer a serious question in 30 seconds especially when running for such a serious position as president of the United States?
Then there were the stupid "this or that" questions. Okay, giving CNN the benefit of the doubt, maybe it was to lighten up the atmosphere a bit. Maybe if America wasn't in such bad shape, I'd have appreciated them better.
However, in these troubled times when many are without jobs, companies are floundering, and we are still at war, a question asking Newt Gingrich, of all people, if he prefers American Idol or Dancing With The Stars seemed frivolous to the nth degree. (His response was American Idol.) Ron Paul was asked, "Blackberry or iPhone?" while Michele Bachman was asked, "Elvis or Johnny Cash?" Thank goodness no one was asked, "Boxers or briefs?"
I also found it a bit distracting for John King to wander around the stage while talking with the candidates. Maybe I just like my debate moderators sitting behind a desk with a timer. If there had been a timer for the candidates to see, they could have timed their responses to finish on time without having John King with his constant interruptions. Grrr.
Amazingly, I stuck with it to the end (with the exception of a short time to answer a phone call). No one destroyed their chances in this outing. Some responses were excellent. Michele Bachman has received a lot of print in the aftermath. Ron Paul, though I'm not a follower, cracked me up when, asked if Barack Obama had done anything right, with his drawl response, "Wow ... that's a tough question!" The deadpan look on his face made it funnier.
It's way too early to fall behind someone ... I keep hoping the white knight on the charger will arrive at any minute in this process ... but if I had to choose someone last night, it would be Mitt Romney. He looks and acts presidential, and has business experience galore. He presents himself as a leader. The health care issue in Massachusetts, however, keeps nagging at me....
Having said that, my first choice for candidate ... though I realize it won't happen ... would be either Governor Bob McDonnell of Virginia or former Florida Governor Jeb Bush.
Do you think Gov. McDonnell would make a good VP to Mitt Romney's President?