Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

A PR mistake that will become a disaster

Patrick Ruffini is breaking the news.

Allah's all over it.

It lloks like the GOP is trying to back out of the YouTube debate slated for September. We concur with Patrick that this is a mistake. The GOP can't blow this off. From Patrick's post over at Hugh's site:

Over the last few hours, I'd been hearing buzz that GOP candidates were going wobbly on the CNN/YouTube debate. I was dismissive. Given the huge earned media hit the Democrats got this week, the fact that even the highly partisan questioners acquitted themselves better than Chris Matthews did in the first debate, and the sponsorship of the powerful Republican Party of Florida, I didn't think the GOP candidates would make the political mistake of passing up it up. I was apparently wrong.

Rudy Giuliani is unlikely to participate, according to an official source.

And Mitt Romney wouldn't commit, dissing the "snowman question." ...

... This is a big mistake. The Democrats are afraid to answer questions from Big Bad Fox News Anchors, and the Republicans are afraid to answer questions from regular people. Which is worse?

From Allah:

Honestly, the debate Monday night was no worse than the three previous ones and two hours of having to endure talking snowmen is well worth it given the mileage the Democrats would get from them skipping out. “The GOP can’t face the people, the GOP can’t handle unorthodox questions, the GOP has no sense no fun” — it’s a PR disaster in the making. Although I’m not surprised it’s Rudy’s who leading the way. Formats that don’t lend themselves to pat answers aren’t his strong suit.

They can't do this. It's not going to look good at all if the candidates bow out because they're afraid of a couple of nutty questions. Patrick points out that some of the questions from this past Monday's debate were stupid and they were notably partisan. Guess what? The one in September will be exactly the same. It will be Republicans -- nutty or sane ones -- that will be asking the questions. Yeah, a couple liberal questioners might slip in, but the candidates would be wise to remember who will be asking the questions.

It's the american public; the same people they're asking to vote for them. This isn't going to go over well if these guys act like they need to be insulated from such inquiring minds. Allah's right, too. The debate on Monday, while it had it's moments (like the Obaba question that he bungled), it wasn't as bad as some people made it out to be. As a matter of fact, if you want a good belly laugh, check out Stephen Green's (of VodkaPundit fame) live-blog account of the proceedings. Yes, he was drunk when he did it, which adds to the hilarity. (For the record, I agree that the best way to watch these debates is with a couple of martinis, but hey, I swore off alcohol in late February. Just in time for Lent.)

If these candidates are looking for a debate with easy questions and easy answers, then drop out now. The job they're running for isn't easy at all. It has no easy answers. The questions are hardly simplistic. We can all sit here on this side of the screen and Monday-morning quarterback our way through four years of any presidency, but we're not the ones calling the real shots. They would be. and if they're running from us because they're afraid of what some of the questions might be, then they have more problems than just the ones within their campaigns.

Oh, and speaking of problems, Allah took note of a piece in Today's Hill report about the fears of the GOP and what might happen in 2008:

Nine months after Republicans were routed in the midterm elections, campaign observers, K Street lobbyists and political experts say there is little evidence the party can rebound in 2008.

The same bad news — the president’s low approval ratings, opposition to the war in Iraq, and the lingering taint of congressional scandal, from the Jack Abramoff investigation to Sen. David Vitter’s (La.) involvement with the alleged “D.C. Madam” — leave observers skeptical that the GOP can dent Democratic majorities, let alone reclaim power in the next election.

“The only thing that has changed is that everything that was bad got worse,” said Bernadette Budde, political director of the Business Industry Political Action Committee. BIPAC supports business-friendly candidates of both parties, though most of the group’s donations go to Republicans.

If the election were held today, “We’d be lucky to hold our own,” one House Republican said.

Skepticism isn’t universal. Some see hope in Congress’s own low approval ratings. Voters, they argue, are frustrated at the Democrats’ inability to deliver on campaign promises.

“I know what happened to our majority when our poll numbers were that low,” said Mike Pence (R-Ind.), a conservative who believes the road to political salvation lies in standing firm against spending and tax increases.

But others say leading indicators suggest Democrats will win the White House and both the House and Senate for the first time since 1994. Most sources doubt a repeat of 2006, when Republicans dropped 30 seats in the House.

But a Democratic pick-up of a few seats in the Senate, for example, when coupled with taking the White House, would have serious implications for major issues like global warming, stem cell research and judicial appointments.

And it would affect the war. No, we need to apply pressure tot he candidates to be there on 17 September, and prepare to answer America. Don't run away fromt he people you are trusting to put you in the Oval Office. It's not only a reflection of the courage of your convictions, but it only adds more fuel to the bombs we're throwing about the GOP being out of touch, and insulated in the Beltway.

Publius II


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