The first debate did a huge damage to Obama reelection chance. It is very hard to reverse the momentum. Many people did not watch Romney debate before then assume that he is weaker, no, I did watch all debates that Obama, or Romney from 2008 and last year primary. Obama will have a very hard time to beat Romney. Even Hilary is a better debater also could not do that. Romney is one of the best debater around. Obama thought he is superior than Romney (what an illusion) that is why he loses huge (not big, but huge) in the first debate. Obama best chance is a draw tonight. The chance that he loses big is 60%
But rather a Q and A session. This is not a legitimate debate format. Debate rarely happens as a result. Folks ask questions and the addressed answers. There is sometimes an opportunity for the non-addressed to rebut; but this is not a formal requirement. Prompts are not well formed or even existent. Questions from the hall are typically leading and weighted.To call this modern town hall a debate is akin to calling a circus travelling zoo.
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No, town hall debates are not the best format for Presidential debates. Town hall debates are not like they were years ago. Candidates themselves do not seem to hold the debates in high regard anymore. These debates do not seem to be as important to the candidates as they were once meant to be. Candidates are unprepared, the debates seem less organized and there appears to be more finger pointing than fact stating.
The questions asked are sometimes not very good, and the people asking them are usually nervous and not the most articulate. The candidates then pander directly to the person asking the question, instead of actually answering it in a way that conveys the facts of the issue and what that candidate believes. The presidential debates are kind of a circus in general, but the town hall ones are the worst.
The town hall format of debating is appealing to some because it allows the public, undecided voters to ask their own questions. However, I don't feel that any of the questions are truly answered by the candidates. They appear to remain on their own agendas and gloss over the person's question. Additionally, I don't feel that there is a true debate in this format because the moderator pushes the candidates along. In the case of the last town hall debate, the moderator was herself asking questions instead of fact checking and keeping time.