Yesterday morning on Reliable Sources, Brian Stelter broke down how the Republican debate would go down on both CNN and Fox News. As he put it: “Fox News is only going to include the ten candidates who are faring best in the polls.” And, as for CNN? “CNN is going to do it a little bit differently, and have a two part debate. One part will have the top 8 to 10 candidates, according to those polls, and the other part will have candidates that aren’t polling as well, but at least have one percentage of support in the polls. One percent will be the threshold.”
“[Fox News] says [the candidates who didn’t make their debate] will be invited on other Fox shows the day of the debate, but not on the debate stage.”
My take: what’s wrong with what Fox News is doing?
No one wants to watch a debate with tons of candidates on the stage; the more people, the fewer questions, which means a lesser chance for viewers to really get to know the candidates and see how they handle pressure. And, as it is, there are already going to be at least ten (since they could possibly be tied, allowing more more than 10), so the more candidates you put on one night, the worse it will be.
As it is, already Fox News’ Greta van Susteren has blogged that she will allow the candidates who aren’t eligible to be on the debate stage to come on her show, On the Record, the same night of the debate.
CNN’s method is okay – doing two segments. But when you split it like that, with an already overpopulated field, it will only diminish a saturated debate.
So, in my opinion… that’s why Fox News got it right.
Below is video of Brian Stelter’s bit highlighted at the beginning of my post: