The first presidential debate is just about two weeks away, and speculation about how it and the subsequent events will change the 2016 election has reached a fever pitch.
Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers have been dropping (as apparently is she), while rival Donald Trump’s poll numbers have held stead and he has enjoyed his longest stretch of success since he declared his candidacy last year.
Trump has agreed to do all the debates, but in an interview on Monday he suggested that the debates should be reformatted so as not to include a moderator, Politico reported.
Citing the “rigged system,” Trump stated that doing a debate with no moderators would avoid the possibility of people accusing the moderators of being too tough (or not tough enough) on either candidate.
“The fact is that they’re gaming the system, and I think, maybe, we should have no moderator. Let Hillary and I sit there and just debate because I think the system is being rigged so it’s gonna be a very unfair debate, and I can see it happening right now because everyone’s saying that (Commander in Chief Forum Moderator Matt Lauer) was soft on Trump,” he explained.
“Well now the new person’s gonna try to be really hard on Trump just to show, you know, the establishment what he can do. So I think it’s very unfair what they’re doing. So I think we should have a debate with no moderators — just Hillary and I sitting there talking,” Trump stated.
While the idea is intriguing — and could result in hysterical results if implemented — it probably isn’t going to happen.
Moderators are needed during a debate to keep the candidates on topic. With no moderators, the debate would likely dissolve into a shouting match to which no one could bear listening.
Some of the moderators during the Republican primary debates were accused of being unfair to Trump, but he turned that into an advantage in the court of public opinion.
He could do the same thing during the presidential debates, even if the moderators are tough on him, because he can handle the pressure. If he can keep his cool and ignore the baiting that Clinton is likely to engage in, he could emerge looking more presidential than ever.
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