Sunday, April 27, 2008

Another Debate? No Thanks

"Hey, how 'bout another round?"

"Don't you guys think you've had enough?"

This week, Hillary Clinton has challenged front-runner, Barack Obama to yet another debate, which would be the 22nd debate in which they have participated. Obama, wisely in my view, has declined.

From Hillary's point of view, another debate (or two) makes sense. She has nothing to lose. Another poor performance by Obama, such as the last debate in Philadelphia, in which he was hit with surprisingly hard questions, and Hillary might goin another primary victory. Certainly, it is her hope that Obama would have another poor performance, driving his numbers down and cementing her claim that Obama could never stand up to the "Republican Attack Machine".

Obama, for his part, is running out the clock. No news is good news for him. His lead in pledged delegates will not be overtaken. With another debate, he can only lose standing with the Superdelegates. The last thing he needs right now is to subject himself to hard questions about Reverend Wright, Bill Ayers, and his statements about small-town voters, etc. True, Hillary will charge that he is afraid to debate her again, but who cares?

But for the public, what is to be gained by yet another debate? If the Democrats need another debate to figure out who they prefer, God help them. After 21 debates, what will number 22 do for the voters?

Let's face it. In terms of issues and philosophy, there isn't much difference between the two. The big difference lies in personality, style and other issues.

If I were a Democrat, I would say enough is enough. Let the final primaries be held so that everyone can cast their vote. Then let the Superdelegates make their choice. Everyone agrees that a prolonged fight that goes to the convention only hurts the Democrats more. But as an independent who will vote Republican in November, it is tempting to say let the show go on.

But in all honesty, who can justify another debate?

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