Fox News/Youtube GOP debate, September 22, 2011 (Perry, Romney, Bachmann...)
Tonight Fox News will be conducting a GOP debate in conjunction with Youtube, with some of the questions to be asked having been submitted via Youtube. Feel free to leave comments below before, during or after the debate. This post will be updated after a transcript becomes available. This debate stands to be just as bad and as much of a public disservice as all the others, especially considering the involvement of Youtube.
Participants: Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann, Jon Huntsman, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, and Gary Johnson. Note that the last two major debates didn't include Johnson.
Suggested reading: debates for past examples of bogus debates; popular voting systems for an explanation of the flawed system Youtube uses to choose the questions that are asked; Youtube corporate and Google corporate for past bogus debates they've been involved in and their other political activities; and each of the names in the last paragraph.
UPDATE: I only saw the immigration portion of the debate, and that was just as bad as I predicted. Chris Wallace asked weak questions and then the candidates responded with their stock speeches, in at least Bachmann's case not even bothering to come close to answering the weak question. Wallace had no followups that I saw. A question from FAIR was incredibly weak (asking candidates if they support eVerify) when there are countless other, far tougher questions that they could have asked.
I can't stress just how dangerous this is to the U.S. These people want to be president of the U.S., and they're being asked questions that are far weaker than a candidate for an intern position at Youtube would be asked. The way around that is to support policy debates using the plan outlined at the link, a plan I posted here almost four years ago. If you want the best candidate for president - even if you need to put partisanship aside - support that plan, post it to social sharing sites, and tweet it to hacks at media organizations like Youtube and Fox.
As for the supposed debate, the key immigration part appears to have been Santorum castigating Perry over immigration. Perry said this about the bill he supported that gives in-state tuition to illegal aliens:
"If you say that we should not educate children who have come into our state for no reason than they've been brought there, by no fault of their own, I don't think you have a heart... I still support it greatly."
Santorum responded like this:
"You're sort of making this leap that unless the taxpayers subsidize it they won't be able to go... The point is, why are we subsidizing this? … Why should they be given preferential treatment as an illegal in this country? ...Yes, I would say that [Perry] is soft on illegal immigration."