The Crystal Ball Answers: Do Debates Matter?Everything is up for debate: college football rankings, The Magnificent Seven (1960 vs. 2016) and, of course, that quadrennial American entertainment attraction, Presidential Politics. But, "Do debates matter?" For the answer, we turn to Larry Sabato, a favorite Council speaker and producer of the political forecasting newsletter Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics. (FYI: Attend the Council's Monday, September 26, First Presidential Debate Watching Party at Angelika Dallas and you'll have the opportunity to participate in a Council Debate Poll. We'll tell you who won or lost the audience.)
How does Political Scientist Sabato answer, "Do debates matter?" He's got a chart that tracks the post-presidential debate trends from 1960 through 2012. And he predicts, "Both Trump and Clinton will try to make voters afraid of the other, a useful unification tool we’re deeming FOT vs. FOH ('Fear of Trump' versus 'Fear of Hillary'). Join us at the Watch Party and we'll determine the accuracy of Sabato's Crystal Ball.
NBC's LESTER HOLT NAMED MODERATOR
There was a slight sigh of relief over the weekend when the Council learned that both teams will show up for the presidential debates. Republican candidate Donald Trump said he'd be at the debates with Democrat Hillary Clinton and that means that the Council's 1st Presidential Debate Watch Party on Monday, September 26, will go on as planned at the Angelika Film Center & Cafe in Dallas. Don't miss this presentation by the non-partsan Council.
We also learned that contrary to suggestions by youthful writers in a guest column in The Washington Post, the journalists questioning the candidates (Clinton turns 69 on October 26, Trump is 70) will NOT be millennials.
The first debate's moderator will be Lester Holt, 57, anchor of NBC Nightly News. The October 9 town hall debate will be moderated by veteran ABC reporter Martha Raddatz, 63, and CNN host Anderson Cooper, 49. The final debate, on October 19, will be moderated by Fox News' Chris Wallace, 68.
The election is Tuesday, November 8. The last day to register to vote for this election in Texas is October 11. Register to vote here.