Yes, I know today is the much-anticipated second debate among the candidates for the Republican nomination for President. It’s kind of Monday-night football for political nerds. (I will be making popcorn.) It’s almost five scheduled hours with the kids’ table beginning at 6:00 and the main event starting at 8:00. It makes a Red Sox-Yankees game seem fast.
If the Republicans should be commended for exposing their candidates to public scrutiny in advance of the first votes being cast, the Democrats should be castigated. Their first debate is still four weeks away on a Tuesday night. They are planning five more, with three having been scheduled. Check out the dates for those three. The next one is November 14, a Saturday. Then we have one on December 19, also a Saturday in the week leading to Christmas. Then, there is a Sunday one, January 17 in the middle of a three-day weekend. Good way to generate interest and enthusiasm.
Of course, there is an abiding suspicion that the limited number of debates and the scheduling is precisely because the Democratic National Committee does not want exposure for its presumed nominee, Hillary Clinton. While I think the unguarded Clinton is both charming and compelling, the Clinton that will be on display is likely to be the defensive candidate hewing strictly to focus group-driven talking points. It will be a stark contrast to a Bernie Sanders or possibly a Joe Biden, and not a comparison that will stand her in good stead.
I’m off to get my snacks for tonight.