Debate idea

By Tom Quiner








Four Republicans are brilliant debaters: Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina.

The Christie and Fiorina campaigns are lagging far behind. According to the Real Clear Politics average, Fiorina stands at 3.8% and Christie at 2%.

By Contrast, Rubio is in 3rd place (behind Carson and Trump) at 11% and Cruz is at 8.8%.

Here is an idea that could boost the efforts of Fiorina or Christie: one of them should challenge Bernie Sanders to a good old-fashioned one-on-one debate.

Mr. Sanders’ campaign needs a boost too. The RCP average has him trailing Hillary Clinton 54% to 32%.

An inter-party debate at this stage would garner publicity for each of these candidates. Conservative voters, in particular, are tuning in to debates this election cycle. Granted, much of that is the Donald Trump effect. Nonetheless, the novelty of a Bernie Sanders going against a Carly Fiorina would generate a lot of interest from voters on both sides of the aisle and potentially boost each of their campaigns.

This isn’t a new idea. In inter-party campaign debate took place in 1988. I was there. It took place at Drake University here in Des Moines, Iowa, between Jack Kemp and Richard Gephardt. Kemp was a candidate at the time for the Republican presidential nomination, and Gephardt for the Democratic nomination.

It was a strong debate between two friendly rivals in a packed hall.

A Fiorina/Sanders debate, or even a Christie/Sanders debate, would seem like a fresh idea today.

If you like this idea, contact their campaigns and suggest it.




  1. lburleso on November 5, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    I am puzzled as to why Fiorina has slipped.

    • quinersdiner on November 5, 2015 at 4:20 pm

      I am too. Her last debate performance was strong. But Rubio, Cruz, and Christie had the zinger lines that were replayed repeatedly on the networks and social media.

      • Shawn Pavlik on November 6, 2015 at 8:54 am

        I like Fiorina. I think she’d make an excellent VEEP, and could be groomed, then, to be our next President after Ted Cruz.

  2. stevegreer1 on November 7, 2015 at 10:17 am

    I don’t know what is a scarier prospect: That 54% of those polled think that Hillary, with all of her lies and scandals, is Presidential material, or the 32% who think that Bernie is just as capable. The Democrat party of today is in ruins if those are the best two they have to offer.

    • quinersdiner on November 7, 2015 at 11:18 am

      I totally agree with you, Steve.

    • oarubio on November 8, 2015 at 5:09 pm

      Unfortunately, their ruins are currently are occupying our White House!