General Question

Pandora's avatar

Do you think if Politicians where only given free time on tv debates that the race would then be equally fair to all candidates?

Asked by Pandora (30182points) September 19th, 2011

I think these country wide races, cost us tons of money and the politicians end up more on the road than doing the job they were voted to do in the first place. Why do they have to go on the road and shake hands and kiss a baby? I really don’t care to meet any of them. I want to only know what they are going to do. They are not rock stars and don’t need to spend money like one. Not to mention, I never liked the idea of companies contributing money to certain polititians campaign funds. To me this seems a lot like a bribe. Just because its not under the table doesn’t mean there may not be some favors granted later.
I know there will be people who will say it will not guarantee us honest, great working politians but I’m not seeing proof that the current way races are ran is working to churn out the best. So what can it hurt?

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16 Answers

CaptainHarley's avatar

Yes, but I seriously doubt that will ever happen.

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
woodcutter's avatar

Yes. And campaigns that are publicly funded would be a lot more efficient without the endless supply of money. Like the Capt said, ain’t gonna happen.

JLeslie's avatar

I am not to the extreme on thos issue, but I do want the funds limited greatly. I wouldn’t say I don’t. Are about metting politicians in person, I do care to see town meetings, question and answer type events, but it does not have to be in my town, it can be simply televised. I do want to see politicians have time to really talk about their ideas without it always being a question and answer format also. Maybe instead of 2 or 3 debates, have more varied types of get to know the candidates every couple months, and let’s not start campaigning so far ahead of an election. I am against the maasive amounts of advertising in general done by candidates. It should be handled by the governments for equal time. Local, federal, depending on the particular race.

marinelife's avatar

I think we would get a lot of polished production and very little substance. At least in debates the moderators try to address the issues.

wundayatta's avatar

That is the way it is now. Politicians are given free time on TV debates.

They can also buy as much time as they want. And that is legal and is affirmed by the supreme court. Politicians have free speech rights like the rest of us, including corporations, who can spend as much money as they want for politicians.

Even if you could restrict things, it wouldn’t matter. There is always a way around restrictions. Always. The best we can to is track who pays for politicians and hope that people will pay attention. They don’t, of course, but this is a democracy. People are free to remain as ignorant as they want.

Ron_C's avatar

Private corporate money should be banned from candidates after they qualify to run in a national election. Of course the politicians that benefit and work for big money run the country and make the laws. Nothing short of a revolution will change the situation and make the electoral process government funded.

wonderingwhy's avatar

Require each candidate provide a three page paper for each core national issues in the following format.
National Issue – “how I see it”
Position – “what I think needs to be done”
Ways & Means – “how I’m going to enact my position”
Pitfalls – “what are the down sides and how will I address them”

Post it online, in the papers, on tv etc. It makes clear comparisons easier and provides easy fodder for debate.

With regard to corporate contributions… Unlike the supreme court, I don’t believe any corporation should be recognized as a “person” much less afforded political voice through contributions.

rojo's avatar

No, I agree with marinelife about polished production and little substance. What would be helpful however is if they did away with the “Debate Commission” who have to approve both the candidates involved and the questions that are asked. So would having a moderator that would brook no sidestepping or meandering from the question but demanded an actual answer.

wonderingwhy's avatar

@rojo agreed; too many half answers or worse, flashes of rhetoric/stump-thumping veiled as an answer.

moderator: how would you fix the economy?
candidate: we can’t raise taxes! I won’t raise taxes! dammit just say no to taxes!
moderator: ok, we get that, but how would you fix the economy?

Pandora's avatar

@Ron_C Not if a national petition was set into motion. With enough people signing, they will have to change it.
@wonderingwhy Wonderful idea. And have them post it on a website instead of a news station that is often biased.
@rojo I agree. And what I often find so annoying is that they actually think people don’t know when they are dodging the question. Whenever they dodge a question, a light behind them in the shape of a huge dunce hat should come on. They can be given a pass by saying, I really don’t know but I will make sure I’m prepared by the next debate. If they are not prepared by the next debate than they are kicked out.
But I like the idea of a written essay so they can’t say, Oh, I didn’t say that. Or it was taken out of context. And millions of americans can take there time and look over what each candidate said and compare. It is easy to get lost over who said what, especially since so many are skilled at saying nothing. Its much easier to catch nonsense in print.
Its like applying for a job and filling out a resume. In the end you pick the people who each did well in their party so the stupid ones go home and don’t waste our time.

cheebdragon's avatar

I think people would be bored shitless…..besides, that many lies in one location just might trigger an apocalypse or bring forth the anti-Christ….

Pandora's avatar

@cheebdragon What makes you think people aren’t bored shitless already. LOL
I can see the second one happening.

Ron_C's avatar

@Pandora ” if a national petition was set into motion. With enough people signing, they will have to change it.” There are no provisions in the constitution for a national referendum. All new law are proposed in the House and Senate and passed with the consent of both houses then signed or vetoed by the president.

There is no way for a citizen group to put an initiative on the ballot. Individual states like California may do it but not nationally. Too bad. It is the same process that keeps people in congress, it is always the “other guy” that’s the problem, not “out guy”.

cheebdragon's avatar

Dead politicians tell no lies….~

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