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Old 09-05-2004, 05:36 AM   #16
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I guess the classic example of debates influencing an election being the Nixon / Kennedy Great Debates of 1960.

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Old 09-05-2004, 06:21 AM   #17
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Yeah, A_Wanderer, but actually not the only case. In 1980 Jimmy Carter was leading in the polls, and then he and Reagan had one debate. There was alot of sparring between the candidates over debates that year, with Carter never really wanting to leave the Rose Garden. They had the debate and alot of people changed their minds about Reagan. Reagan carried 45 states in the election. In 1976 Gerald Ford made a big mistake in one of the debates and claimed that Poland wasn't under Soviet domination, when, in fact, it was behind the Iron Curtain. This upset alot of people. Three presidential debates are scheduled for this year. We'll just see what happens. I'm trying to keep a sense of humor about the whole thing and say I feel like Don Quixote, which actually is nothing new for me. It happens every four years.

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Old 09-05-2004, 10:22 AM   #18
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I think the impact the debates has decreased since cable TV came around with now 3 24 hour news networks and 3 different C-SPAN channels. Prior to this, you only got a bit of news on one of the three major networks. The same might be said for the conventions as well. There are so many other ways for a political party to get its word out today compared to 1980. Obviously, the internet is huge!
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Old 09-05-2004, 11:03 AM   #19
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I agree, Sting, especially about the Internet. There's no way to calculate the impact of the Internet on elections, except to say it's huge. You've got everything from blogs, on-line fundraising, Internet news reports, political sites of all descriptions, the list goes on and on.
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Old 09-05-2004, 11:12 AM   #20
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And to think, Al Gore "invented" the internet and he still "lost"!

...that was all tongue in cheek.

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