Politics on Point: 1st presidential debate

RICK: IT WAS ONE OF THE HIGHEST RATED PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES OF ALL TIME – ESTIMATES SAID NEARLY 100 MILLION PEOPLE TUNED IN MONDAY EVENING TO SEE THE TOP PRESIDENTIAL CONTENDERS DEBATE; AT HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY IN NEW YORK.   

AFTER SNIPING AT EACH OTHER FOR MONTHS, BUSINESSMAN DONALD TRUMP AND SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON FINALLY CAME FACE-TO-FACE, SPARRING ABOUT SUCH HOT TOPICS AS TRADE, RACE, AND FIGHTING TERRORISM. UP FIRST, WE CHECK IN WITH NICK CASTELE, WHO HAS A POSTDEBATE WRAP-UP FOR US IN THIS WEEK’S POLITICS ON POINT.   

NICK: THEY TALKED ABOUT TRADE [CLIP], THEY TALKED ABOUT RACE [CLIP], BUT THEY MOSTLY TALKED ABOUT EACH OTHER [CLIP].  
SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON AND BUSINESSMAN DONALD TRUMP WERE CRITICIZED FOR SPENDING MORE TIME ATTACKING EACH OTHER THAN EXPLAINING THEIR BELIEFS DURING MONDAY’S DEBATE.  [CLIP: TRUMP: I HAVE A WINNING TEMPERAMENT]  

– CLINTON’S SHOULDER-SHIMMY RESPONSE TO THAT CLAIM LATER BECAME A MEME ON SOCIAL MEDIA.   

IN ADDITION TO THE TWO CANDIDATES, THERE WAS ANOTHER ACTIVE PARTICIPANT IN THE DEBATE – THE MODERATOR. THE MODERATOR IS A NEUTRAL PARTY WHO DIRECTS THE DISCUSSION WITH QUESTIONS AND TOPICS. MONDAY EVENING, NEWS ANCHOR LESTER HOLT DID THE HONORS –

[CLIP] – BUT EVEN THE ROLE OF THE MODERATOR IS UNDER DEBATE: SOME SAY THE MODERATOR SHOULD FACT-CHECK -- OR CALL OUT THE DEBATERS WHEN THEY’RE NOT BEING TRUTHFUL, AS HOLT DID TO TRUMP OVER HIS SUPPORT OF THE IRAQ WAR. [CLIP]  

AFTER THE DEBATE, YOU MAY HAVE HEARD ONE CANDIDATE DECLARED A WINNER OR A LOSER – NEWS COMMENTATORS OFTEN ANALYZE THE DEBATE PERFORMANCES AND COME TO THEIR OWN CONCLUSIONS, BUT THE PURPOSE OF A PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE IS NOT TO WIN OR LOSE A PARTICULAR ARGUMENT. THE PURPOSE IS TO GIVE THE CANDIDATES AN OPPORTUNITY TO EXPLAIN AND DEFEND THEIR VIEWS AND POLICIES TO POTENTIAL VOTERS.   

AND, IN SOME CASES, VOTERS REJECTED THE CANDIDATE THAT REPORTERS SELECTED AS THE DEBATE WINNER – LIKE AL GORE IN 2000. GORE HAD QUICK, SMART RESPONSES, BUT VIEWERS OF THAT DEBATE WITH GEORGE W. BUSH THOUGHT GORE WAS RUDE TO HIS OPPONENT, BY LOUDLY SIGHING THROUGHOUT THE DEBATE.  

*LOUD SIGH* WHILE THERE’S SOME DISPUTE ABOUT WHETHER THESE PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES ACTUALLY SWAY VOTERS, WHAT WE DO KNOW IS THAT MONDAY’S DEBATE GOT TOP RATINGS -- AND THESE DEBATES TEND TO MAKE US BETTER-INFORMED VOTERS. THAT’S WHY THIS FIRST DEBATE HAS BEEN CALLED THE SUPER BOWL OF DEMOCRACY.  

Instructional Links

Website Article: Time for Kids, The Candidates’ Big Night http://www.timeforkids.com/news/candidates-big-night/461426

Timeline: Scholastic: The Road to the White House http://election.scholastic.com/election-central/road-to-the-white-house/

Website Article & Worksheet: 2016 Presidential Election https://www.studentnewsdaily.com/2016-presidential-election/

Video: Youtube. How to Debate, An Introduction https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDTk-_Lt6sQ

Website: Commission on Presidential Debates http://www.debates.org

Website Article: Learn NC, Debates in the Middle School Classroom http://www.learnnc.org/lp/pages/636

Support Provided By

More Wcpn Schedule
More Wclv Schedule
Schedule
Donate
90.3 WCPN
WCLV Classical 104.9
NPR Hourly Newscast
The Latest News and Headlines from NPR
This text will be replaced with a player.
This text will be replaced with a player.
This text will be replaced with a player.