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The CNN/YouTube debate: Raised stakes, lowered expectations

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By Michelle Malkin  •  November 28, 2007 11:29 AM

Update: Stephen Green will be live drinkblogging the debates and issues a challenge:

Well, here’s a dare for you, Michelle. You match me drink for drink tonight, you with your camcorder and me with my keyboard. Between us we’ll split six three-ounce (or so) vodka or gin (your choice) martinis. At the end of the debate, we’ll see who produces the most–and most entertaining–content.

I wish I could accept. As I told Stephen, I can’t get through a single wine cooler. But hopefully, we can get Stephen on the phone during our livestream and check in with his, uh, progress throughout the night. 🙂

Steve’s got his own set of YouTube questions at PJM.

***
The WSJ says the stakes are raised for tonight’s CNN/YouTube debate. Manage your expectations, of course. The questions don’t look so good–can’t say we didn’t try, though–and CNN itself predicts a “circus-y smackdown.” CNN blames the candidates. Yeah, well, we saw who the real circus ringleaders of the last debate were. I’ll repeat what I said back in July when I recommended that Republicans show up to this debate:

I know. The CNN/YouTube Democrat debate was a circus. I said so. But Republicans shouldn’t sit out their turn. And conservatives shouldn’t abandon YouTube to the moonbats and jihadists. The GOP candidates should see it as an opportunity.

If the questions are stupid, say so.

If the forum is biased, say so.

Wouldn’t it be a breath of fresh air to see a Republican candidate take command, show some intestinal fortitude, and kick some MSM/left-wing assets?

I’ll be liveblogging the debate tonight beginning at 8pm Eastern and you’ll be able to watch us watching the debate over at Hot Air. We’re going to livestream via UStream and you’ll be able to tune in, chat (register at UStream before you tune in), and witness the circus along with us.

Meantime, here’s satirist Scott Ott’s most important video question. Pretty much sums up the farce of the political season:

***

Tough luck. No UFO questions tonight:

As Republican presidential contenders brace for Wednesday’s CNN-YouTube debate, the executive in charge of the event is unapologetic about his decision to put mainstream journalists in charge of deciding which user-contributed YouTube videos the candidates will actually face on the air.

For all the talk about online voter empowerment, the web is still too immature a medium to set an agenda for a national debate, says CNN senior vice president David Bohrman.

“If you would have taken the most-viewed questions last time, the top question would have been whether Arnold Schwarzenegger was a cyborg sent to save the planet Earth,” says Bohrman, the debate’s executive producer. “The second-most-viewed video question was: Will you a convene a national meeting on UFOs?”

Thus, instead of using an online voting system to select video questions, CNN’s journalists are plowing through the contributions this week.

***

Go to Pollster for all the latest numbers.

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Posted in: GOP,YouTube

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