Debates, Do They Still Work


Margaret Martin, Writer

Presidential debates are intended to help sway the decision for voters however they no longer sway the majority of voters. Presidential debates are broadcast to the nation and allow the republican and democrat nominees to share their opinions about outstanding national issues. This is to help sway undecided voters as well as help candidates gain voters from their opponents. NPR asked undecided voters what they thought after the debate but many voters remained undecided or were pushed in the direction neither candidate desired, to not vote at all. Therefore debates no longer serve the purpose they were intended to and have not swayed undecided voters towards one candidate or another but pushed citizens to not vote, the least preferable outcome.

So debates no longer serve their intended purpose but they do have positive impacts, debates share the opinions of candidates and help viewers compare the candidates. Debates also cement the decision of already decided voters and help them feel confident in the choice they made.

One of the biggest questions is in relation to the most recent debate between President Trump and Vice President Biden as many people, undecided voters especially, were confused and frustrated, unable to understand either candidate due to the storm of interruptions. This brings worries and questions as the debate particularly seemed ultimately useless as the majority of undecided voters came out still unsure or more confused than ever. This debate did not serve the purpose it was intended for nor did it complete the other jobs required in a debate.