Saturday, September 21, 2013

Making Candidate Forums Meaningful


Elections are nearing and numerous groups are finalizing plans to sponsor various "Candidates' Nights/Forums." This would seem to be the right time to suggest that a few rules be adhered to by both the candidates (and their supporters), and those who sponsor such events.

Rule #1 - ALL candidates from ALL political parties should be included in your event, IF you seek any sort of credibility and meaning. Inviting one party, or only those already in office will likely cause you to be seen as partisan, at best.

Rule #2 - ONLY the actual candidate himself/herself should be permitted to represent him/herself. Stand-ins don't count and only permit candidates to make your group dysfunctional when you allow them to send someone else while they attend an event they deem more important.

Rule #3 - ALL candidates should be available to take unscreened (key word) questions from the audience/community. Screening questions smacks of hidden agendas, among other things.
  

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

So SCATS when are you going to rent out Barnard Exempts and host your candidates night? With all the commentators on this site I'm sure you'd be able to attract quite a sizable crowd. Plus, we all know you'd ask fair and meaningful questions to all candidates!

SCATS said...

To 12:55PM ~~ As soon as I get a raise for what I do ;)

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to express my concerns with the Greece Central School District. I moved from New Jersey in 2002 to Greece, Ny. At that time, Greece was considered one of the safest places in suburban NY. I had three children who did well. I, myself became an employee of GCSD. As the years came and gone, I began to see such a decline in the safety and well being for my children. My youngest child spent three years at Athena Middle School terrified because of her bullies. We tried every avenue to help her. In the end, she made the poor choice to become the trouble maker so she could be sent to the office to avoid the abuse. I made the decision to move to Farmington. My daughter is a different girl. She is happy and is making great grades. It's terrible that I had to get out of Greece to protect her. It's ashame that GCSD failed in protecting my child. What happened?

Anonymous said...

Good ground rules BUT the Greece Republicans will NEVER EVER take open questions. They got too much to hide.

Anonymous said...

And the Greece Democrats WILL NEVER EVER participate in a forum that don't directly influence first. They can't win any other way.

SCATS said...

To 2:12PM ~~ Try again, please. Your attempt at English is a FAIL.

Anonymous said...

2:12's use of English is like the emails we get that promise us some money in Ethiopia if we just send them $3000 "with kind salutation madame and great hurry." It goes way beyond typos.

SCATS said...

To 7:57AM ~~ I was trying to be nice :)

Anonymous said...

Ground rules #1 and #2 tend to work at cross-purposes. If you invite all candidates, but only some can make it, and you don't allow representatives for the others, then the organizer seems partisan. You can claim all you want that everyone was invited, but you can't show that you didn't pick the date knowing that only your favored candidate could make it that day.

You have to allow representatives if you intend to be impartial. That is the only way to show that you are not standing in the way of each candidate reaching the assembled audience with their message.

You can judge the reasonableness of each candidate's reason for sending a representative, but you should allow the representative to speak and answer for the candidate.

SCATS said...

To 6:03PM ~~ LMAO!! Only in this corrupted town would anyone ever make such a claim!

Everywhere else, ALL candidates are invited and those who value the event will attend if there is a conflict. Let them do that in Greece, as well. So called "surrogates" are nothing more than a DYSFUNCTIONAL loophole allowed by DYSFUNCTIONAL groups who support DYSFUNCTIONAL candidates.

Can you imagine if a stand-in were permitted for a gubernatorial debate? I can't!

Anonymous said...

Remember the year Robach's mother served as a stand in for the Dewey Stone group? That was definitely a political ploy using Mommy to get the vote.

Anonymous said...

SCATS- "ALL candidates are invited and those who value the event will attend if there is a conflict."
Really! So this date was picked and unlike the Democrats the Republicans actually are elected. Maybe they should say "no" the the eagle scout. You aren't as important. Maybe "no" to another neighborhood group. Maybe "no" to other obligations actually being elected they are asked to do. And unlike the Democrats elected officials meet with the public on a daily basis at events and in their office. They also are going door to door and meeting and greeting. They also will attend many other public appearances before election day. The world does not stop because one neighborhood group picks a date they all can meet. At best their will be 20 people their. On a typical night of door to door they greet 100 people. They should not interact with those 100 because of a chosen 20? Ridiculous and full of self importance if you ask me.

SCATS said...

To 9:47PM ~~ Obviously, YOU are a politician or you would see that what's ridiculous is the idea that sending a stand-in to a "Candidates' Night" event is beyond absurd. No go-fer/clerk/office flunkie can "stand-in" for a candidate that represents anything of import.

Anonymous said...

SCATS- You must be confused! I never said I supported surrogates. By the way the person who always sends surrogates is Louise.

SCATS said...

To 10:19PM ~~ The topic you quoted me about is related to candidates using stand-ins, so I guess the confusion started with you!!

Your contentions that only 20 will attend a Candidates' Night is way off base. This event often draws much more than that!

I've seen Louise send a stand-in once. Robach has yet to make a showing! He always sends the red-headed kid ... esp. since his little dalliance from a number of years ago. He can't afford to take any questions from an audience he hasn't vetted in advance ;)