Fostering a National Discussion:
My Hopes for CNN and the Moderator of the
Second Republican Presidential Debate
On September 16 at the Second Republican Presidential Debate, CNN has a great opportunity to foster a national discussion on what America wants in its next Republican nominee and, more broadly, the future of the country. Due to the Donald Trump effect, the viewership for the debate will be twenty to thirty million additional people than normal. A debate that is focused on relevant issues with questions targeted at learning about the candidates’ governing style and policy preferences could lead to a renewed interest throughout the country in public affairs. The first debate focused primarily on the candidates’ prior statements (whether relevant or not), abortion, and gay marriage. Hopefully, CNN will use this debate to focus on the issues which have a greater impact on the country and provide a greater insight into the candidates’ governing style and goals. Possible topics could include: the national debt, jobs, poverty, education, race relations, healthcare, immigration, the environment, guns and violence, policing in America, and US foreign policy throughout the world (not just the Middle East). Additionally, the moderators’ goal should not be to stump the candidates but, rather, give the candidates a question from which he/she can provide information useful to the voter.