The other day the Old Timer from Pincher Creek asked me how I’d clean up election debates.
He asked the right guy. I was a member of the Canadian House of Commons and fought many an election battle – and often ignored the Marquis of Queensbury Rules.
Americans don’t force their presidential candidates to debate. Presidential candidates never did debate until the Kennedy/Nixon debates of 1960. Before 1960 an American law made all Presidential Debates illegal unless each and every candidate for president could attend – in 2020 1,222 candidates are running for president. The U.S. got rid of that law in 1960.
Most presidential candidates attend debates only because the U.S. public demands it. Most candidates try to avoid presidential debates because one slip of a candidates or his memory can lose he or she the election. Examples:
Here’s how Ronald Regan knocked out Fritz Mondale in 1984. Nixon’s five o’clock shadow lost him the 1960 election.
U.S. laws should force candidates to debate – under Robert’s Rules of Order and additions of Roberts and The Chief Justice of the United States should chair the debates. Candidates would stop interrupting, failing to stick to the point, lying.
Canadians should force Canadian party leaders and provincial leaders to appear in election debates before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada and the top court of each province.
And judges should chair our parliament and the provincial legislatures for the same reasons they should chair election debates.
See U.S. Presidentail Debates – Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_debates