Monday, June 13, 2011

The NH Republican Presidential Primary Debate

After Wwtching tonight's Republican primary presidential debate I was ready to hear another story on the U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner's (D-New York) sex scandal. CNN debate moderator John King rarely asked the prerequisite follow-up questions when Republicans proposed their tax cuts. He didn't ask the Republicans how they would balance the budget while cutting taxes. He didn't ask the Republicans how they would prevent Wall Street from engaging in risky business practices (like bundling) without federal regulations. When one of the Republicans said the president and Congress "overreached" in passing the Dodd-Frank Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, King never asked the Republican why it was an overreach? He did not specifically ask the candidate where, in his view, it went too far or what he would replace it with. He never asked the Republicans what regulations they would cut? Would they repeal the minimum wage law? Would they repeal laws that protected workers from age and disability discrimination? Would they occupational safety laws? Would they repeal laws that regulated when an employee was entitled to a work break? I couldn't believe we have reached the point when asking such questions like the efficacy of having a Food and Drug Administration would be included in the debate but since the Republicans are talking about such repeals King should have pressed them further.

When another Republican candidate blamed the loss in manufacturing jobs in part, on the president's health care plan, King failed to note how we were losing manufacturing jobs long before this president (and for that matter, his predecessor) took office. He did not ask the Republicans how any company that chooses to make things here could compete when those based overseas (say in China or Vietnam) can pay their workers $1.00 an hour and stiff them of health care.

The Republicans, for the most part, were allowed to make their campaign pitches while dodging the questions and their attacks on the Obama administration and government regulation went unchallenged.

Comical moments:

1. when U.S. Representative Michele Bachmann announced she is running for president at a presidential debate. Anyone who doesn't understand why shouldn't be reading this or for that matter, any blog.

2. when former Governor Mitt Romney (R-Massachusetts) said natural disaster relief should be handed by the states AND THE PRIVATE SECTOR. Think about it. In the not-so-distant future your local tornado or hurricane recovery efforts might be sponsored by Citigroup or BP.

3. when Herman Cain and former U.S. Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (R-Georgia) said they wouldn't appoint anti-American militants to their cabinet. Phew. I was getting worried that a future president might pick knowingly pick anti-American militant to serve in his or her cabinet.

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