Both Campaigns Afraid of Follow-Up Questions Tonight

It’s really sad that the candidates for the most powerful person in the world are afraid of Candy Crowley:

Late Sunday, Time magazine reported that both Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama have expressed concern that CNN’s Candy Crowley, the moderator of Tuesday’s town hall debate in Hempstead, N.Y., would ask follow-up questionsan approach that is not consistent with the format the campaigns agreed upon.

On Monday, Crowley addressed those concerns, saying she is not afraid to step in, if necessary.

“It’s a town hall meeting,” Crowley told Wolf Blitzer on “The Situation Room.” “There will be questioners to the right and left of me and in front of the candidates. And they will have the questions. And as was the case in the Charlie Gibson town hall meeting and the Tom Brokaw town hall meeting in presidential campaigns past, there is a time after that for follow-up and for furthering the discussion.”

“Facilitating the conversation, as it were,” Blitzer said.

“Whatever you want to call it, yes,” Crowley said.

Crowleythe first female moderator of presidential debate in 20 yearswas asked how she is preparing for the event.

“I’m trying to just know what the facts are, what the positions are, so that when something comes up that maybe could use a little further explanation,” she said. “It might be as simple as, ‘But the question, sir, was oranges and you said apples. Could you answer oranges?’ Or it might be as simple as, ‘But, gee, how does that fit with the following thing?’”

The moderator chooses the questions submitted for the 90-minute debate by the town hall attendees–undecided voters selected by the Gallup Organization–and Crowley said she wants “to try to cull some new ground out there” and “really get a reflection of what these people want to know about, as well as what is out there for folks that haven’t quite figured it out yet.”

Good. Both candidates need to face tough questions. And I really don’t care how liberal the moderator. Have Rachel Maddow moderate for all I care.

Obama’s policies have been a failure and it’s Mitt’s job — regardless of the moderator — to make that clear.

And if either candidate complains that the moderator wasn’t fair, well too bad. Man up. This is the presidency, not a Montessori school.

Most Popular


Courage: The Greatest of Virtues

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Or Listener), As the reporter assigned the job of writing the article about all of Sidney Blumenthal’s friends and supporters told his ... Read More

My American Dream

This morning, at 8 a.m., I did something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember: I became an American. I first applied for a visa in early 2011, and since then I have slowly worked my way through the system — first as a visa-holder, then as a permanent resident (green card), and, finally, as a ... Read More

The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More