THE DEBATE GROUND RULES
Updated: Oct 1, 2020
Post # 134, Bob McKnight's Political Commentary (Reprint of Post #103)
I have reprinted my Post #103 because of it's critical importance now in the election of our President. There will be 3 debates--September 29th, October 15th and October 22nd. It is imperative that the debates are fair, productive and civil. As stated in this Commentary, attention, care, and aggressive enforcement will be required.
Civility Requirement to Participate in Presidential Debates. Fully Enforced. As we start the campaign for President in earnest, I strongly recommend the sponsors of the debates make the importance of respect among the candidates non negotiable. It should be part of the ground rules, to be agreed upon, in writing by all candidates. All political parties should agree to this requirement, also in writing, before obtaining permission to participate in the debates. There is no place in the debates for name calling or uncivil behavior, as determined by the moderator. Although critics will say this requirement is directed at President Trump, and he does come to mind, but it is for all candidates. This contest is to decide who should represent America in the most important political office on this earth. The Office of the President should be respected, and showing that respect goes for the candidates for that office. This condition should apply equally to all candidates. If a candidate were to slip and violate this pact, they will be given a warning, and once more the candidate will be disqualified from the debate. A listing of examples of incivility could be distributed beforehand. Receipt of it could be required reading confirmed in advance of the debate, by candidate signature. Lastly the Moderator should have the power to terminate the microphone of any violators. It is hard to believe that this ground rule must be established, but it is: and it must be strictly enforced.