NBC Hosts Worst Debate Of The Primary

If you didn’t watch tonight’s debate, let me sum it up for you: Why English as the official language in US? Your Thoughts on Terri Schiavo? When was America last great? Also, the Bush tax cuts didn’t work, explain to us why.’

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Gingrich, who is usually good at rejecting false premises in questioning, punted and responded “it would have been worse without them.” Really?

… in May 2003 Congress accelerated the tax cuts to make them effective immediately. In addition to reducing marginal income tax rates, Congress also lowered the tax rates on capital gains and dividends.

It was at this point that economic growth took off. From May 2003 until December 2007 (when the recession caused by the global financial meltdown occurred) the economy created 8.1 million jobs, or 145,000 a month. By comparison, after the beginning of the 2001 recession and before the 2003 tax cuts, the economy was losing 103,000 jobs a month.

Bush tax cuts spurred growth and additionally stifled unemployment at 5.2% in the years following 9/11. Yes they worked. Gingrich should have answered better and the moderator asking the question should have been mocked on stage for presenting a presupposition as a legitimate, beyond reproach question.

NBC also asked about Terri Schiavo. I was waiting for questions on baseball and steroids, followed by UFOs, fluoridation, and Bigfoot. Zero questions on Fast and Furious, Solyndra, Light Squared, unemployment, rare earth elements and green tech, and a host of other issues more pressing than the silliness asked.

Moderator Brian Williams ducked out for at least five minutes while Romney and Gingrich traded barbs over Fannie/Freddie and Bain. The audience was prohibited from applauding or otherwise exhibiting any kind of life. The set featured an aggressive, blood red background that burned retinas. When Brian Williams wasn’t struggling with avoiding truly topical questions, he was incredulously asking whether or not the candidates believed Wall Street was over-regulated:

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It was easily one of the most underwhelming debates of the primary. The loser of tonight? The line of questioning. If we’re not going to ask candidates questions in which the electorate is truly interested (I don’t recall Schiavo popping up on exit polling in any of the primaries) then the entire exercise is a waste of dollars and time.