Thursday, August 28, 2008

Presidential Debate Series in Knoxville?

Former Knox County Democrat Party Chairman Don Daugherty is now the creator, founder and Chairman of the newly formed Democratic Resource Center ("DRC"). He has issued a challenge to the Knox County Republican Party 's 1st Vice Chair for a series of local Presidential debates. Below is the letter sent to 1st Vice Chair Johns. This seems like a great idea, I only hope that the Republicans will seize this opportunity to take the message to the people.

Corey Johns
1st Vice Chair
Knox County Republican Party
5953 Wilksboro Lane
Knoxville, TN 37912

Dear Corey:

I would like to propose a series of jointly sponsored local events to coincide with the three scheduled Presidential Debates and the Vice Presidential Debate. These proposed events would be planned and conducted as a means to compliment the scheduled debates, inform the electorate, and increase voter participation and interest in the election.

My suggestion is that we provide four well-informed surrogates for our parties’ four respective nominees, hold these debates immediately preceding the four scheduled Presidential Debates in four different – East, West, North, and South Knox County – locations, publicize the events in the media and elsewhere, and insure that we have available for the public an assortment of campaign materials, such as yard signs, bumper stickers, buttons, lapel stickers, brochures, position papers, and other informative materials on our nominees.

Corey, I’m certain that we could also rely upon the local media and other public interest groups to assist in sponsoring and promoting these events and providing unbiased moderators agreed upon by the Knox County GOP and the DRC. I would also propose a joint viewing of each Presidential and Vice Presidential Debate by local Republicans and Democrats at commodious venues. The dates of the Presidential Debates are Sept. 26, at Ole Miss, with domestic policy focus; Oct. 7, in Nashville, in a “town hall” format; and Oct. 15, at Hofstra, with foreign policy focus. The Vice Presidential Debate is scheduled for Oct. 2, at Wash. U in St. Louis, focusing on both domestic and foreign policy.

As far as details go, I would propose that we follow the agreed upon format of the Presidential and Vice Presidential Debates. For instance:

• Each debate will begin at 7:00 p.m. EDT;

• Each debate will have a single moderator and last for 60-90 minutes;

• In the first and third Presidential Debates and the Vice Presidential Debate, the candidates will be seated with the moderator at a table;

• One Presidential Debate will focus primarily on domestic policy and one Presidential Debate will focus primarily on foreign policy. The second Presidential Debate will be held as a “town meeting” in which Knox County citizens will pose questions to the candidates. The Vice Presidential Debate will cover both foreign and domestic topics;

• During the first and third presidential debates, and the vice presidential debate, the time will be divided into ten-minute segments. The moderator will introduce each segment with an issue on which each candidate will comment, after which the moderator will facilitate further discussion of the issue, including direct exchange between the candidates for the balance of that segment;

• The participants in the town meeting will pose their questions to the candidates after reviewing their questions with the moderator for the sole purpose of avoiding duplication;

• Time at the end of the final presidential debate will be reserved for closing statements.

Corey, I believe the citizens of Knox County are ready for a series of events as outlined above, don’t you? I’m sure you would agree that we are all well-served by increasing public participation in the electoral process. These events would provide local voters with direct involvement in the process and are intended to encourage such participation. We may want to allow the parties and public interest groups to hold other events to coincide with the debates, such as voter registration drives.

Finally, I am more than willing to discuss and accept any suggestions you might have which would improve the overall format and process of the debates.

With kindest regards,
I am,

Don Daugherty
Chair, Democratic Resource Center


Anonymous said...

Wow! What B.S.!!!! Don Daugherty is likea fice year old standing in the center of a room jumping up and down, yelling, "Look at me! Look at me!!"

He's great at making suggestions and proposals, and an abysmal failure at follow thorough and completion of a program. He was elected Democratic Party Chairman and then proved himself the ultimate "Quitter" by resigning just weeks before the August Primary, whining that he had too much oppostion within the Party. At the last moment, he tried to resind his resignation, but by a vote of 39-to-10!!!! his resignation was happily accepted. And now we have his laughable "Democratic Resource Center", his own little creation; founded and funded by him and made up of him and his Nine Naybobs of Negativism.

Go ahead, Cory, accept DD's proposal. Then forget about it. He'll back out of some phony reason just days before the beginning.

Brian Hornback said...

Wow, Anonymous. You must know the former Chairman. I don't know him that well. We have communicated via email. I thought this debate series was a great idea.

But, I will point out that he is not the only Democrat Chairman to walk out. The Chairman just before Daugherty, Jim Gray quit the same gig. So if Daugherty is a quitter then is Jim Gray a quitter also?

Nabob said...

These debates and the Democratic Resource Center are both great ideas. The Democratic Resource Center is also hosting an 8th District Candidate Forum on Monday, Sep. 1 at the Gibbs Ruritan Building at
How's that for Negativism?