Some of the most important pillars of our political process are conversation, debate, and discourse. This is why it has been absolutely befuddling to witness some Democrats and mainstream media advocating for the 2020 Presidential Debates to be canceled.
We knew going into the election that the left was going to make every excuse possible for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Whether it was his faltering public speaking skills, his gaffes, or his past atrocious record on issues such as criminal justice, most figured he would be defended at every turn.
However, I don’t think anyone expected high profile leaders such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to advocate for the cancellation of the debates as she did on August 28th. She stated, “I don’t think there should be any debates… I wouldn’t legitimize a conversation with him, nor a debate in terms of presidency of The United States.” This has to be one of the most insane proclamations I have ever heard uttered by a politician. Speaker Pelosi is advocating that the citizens of The United States not be able to witness a conversation detailing the policy and political differences between President Trump and former Vice President Biden.
Debates have changed elections before. Ronald Reagan’s performances against Jimmy Carter and Walter Mondale had tremendous impact on his election victories in both 1980 and 1984. Al Gore’s famous “yawning” left a bad taste in voters’ mouths in his debate against George W. Bush in 2000. John F. Kennedy’s performance in the first televised presidential debate ever secured his victory against Richard Nixon in 1960 because of how calm and collected he looked, indifferent to Nixon. Canceling these debates has the chance to drastically change the election as history has shown.
In addition to the historical impact, why is the destruction of conversation the thing that is even being considered? If there has ever been a time for a conversation between two political parties, it is 2020. We are as polarized as we have ever been as a nation. There are many who have already decided who they are voting for, and those minds probably cannot be changed. But at a time when the country is so divided, independents, yet again, will ultimately decide this election. Not everyone is like me or my leftist friend who, regardless of what happens, is more than likely going to vote one way and not consider voting the other. But the majority of the country is just not like that. Most voters are independent and non-partisan. Those of us that pay attention to politics certainly look through rose-colored glasses when we consider policy differences and how we will align with our party, but a large part of the voter populous has still not decided who they are voting for, yet.
Cancelling the presidential debates is not a precedent that should even be considered. This nation is far more mature and sensible than to believe we need to destroy a pillar of the political process because one side is afraid to discuss their ideas with the general public or debate differences with the man in office.
If there is any conversation that shouldn’t be taking place, it is this one. Do not cancel the debates.