Democracy Soup

Making sense out of the world of politics

Running the presidential primaries like a beauty pageant

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Originally published on on Mon, 01/28/2008 – 11:26am

The presidential debates are just another TV show to some voters. Like TV shows, executives make notes to try and improve the show.

There are plenty of ways to compare the 2008 presidential primary race to Saturday night’s Miss America pageant. Fake, non-confrontational answers designed to pacify a family in Kansas. Superficial, quick-snap judgments made about candidates. And smiling regardless of how well you do.

But there was one element from the pageant that the presidential primary debates can use. For the first time, the eliminated contestants sat on risers on stage after they had been eliminated. Traditionally, the “losers” (aren’t they all truly winners) are whisked away not to be seen until they all mob the winner.

But it would be fun to see the candidates who have dropped out sitting off to the side, being able to see their reactions to the questions and answers from the remaining candidates. And perhaps, like other reality shows, we can get their reactions during breaks in the debates.

Now the threshold to qualify for this is getting to Iowa before dropping out. So Mike Gravel would make it, but Sam Brownback would not.

Once people drop out, their voices get removed from the campaign. But unlike the pundits we do hear from, these people know what it’s like to run for president. I’d rather hear that commentary than the pundits.


Written by democracysoup

January 28, 2008 at 11:26 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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