Second Debate was Better, But How Can it Improve?

Christian Lohrenz ® Columnist |

As we near election day, the candidates for the presidency wind up for the home stretch. Ballots have been mailed in for weeks and masses have opted for early voting across the country. 

This past week the candidates took to the stage for the final debate of this election cycle. I, like many of you, I’m sure, was quite uneasy at the idea of sitting watching these two “debates” in a way that they did after the first debate. 

However, this last round of debating truly was quite an ease to the mind of the American people, at least to some extent. Obviously, they held stances on either end and were quick to throw personal jabs, but it was to a much more contained extent than the first debate. 

As a skeptic of the formula of the current debates, I was interested to see how the implementation of the “mute” feature would work. It was only used a handful of the times as the candidates, to both of their credit, didn’t interrupt nearly as much as expected. 

Of course, this didn’t keep the candidates on topic. The topics that were outlined within the different time periods truly represented key issues that the American people wanted to hear opinions on. Rather, both candidates took to personal jabs tied to corruption on both sides.  

On the bright side, the candidates did outline more specifics on their plans to lead the country after the election. 

Trump claimed the goal going forward was to continue the path he’s already created. One of his key points was establishing that, in regard to the pandemic, the country has “Rounded the corner”. Many debate this claim as there is a dramatic increase in cases surrounding many of the Midwestern states. 

Biden called for unity, claiming that he would be a president for both sides of the political spectrum. One of his key lines was an offensive attack on Trump’s response in which he stated, “Americans are learning to live with it (the pandemic),” to which Biden notably responded, “They are learning to die from it.”  

The environment was discussed again in the debate as both candidates made their pitches for moving forward. 

Biden proclaimed his plan would create new jobs and build the economy further, which of course Trump debated. President Trump laid out his plan to work toward cleaner water rather than a reduction of fracking and oil industry production. 

All in all, this last debate was more bearable to watch and listen to. It seems that this format, which has been in place for decades, is here to stay. I wonder however how much these could benefit from the inclusion of other candidates? Third party candidates who may be polling poorly but simply could share other ideas. There are those however who think the whole system needs to be thrown out and reimagined to truly give these candidates a platform to speak rather than push for sound bites.

Who knows, maybe podcast hosts like Joe Rogan will be the moderators of the future on a different platform.`

Header photo: President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden participate in the final presidential debate at Belmont University, Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (Jim Bourg/Pool via AP)

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