July 17th, 2007
03:34 PM ET
9 years ago

GOP seeks a seat at CNN's Democratic debate

WASHINGTON (CNN) - While members of the Republican National Committee will not be present at next week's Democratic presidential debate in South Carolina, the GOP is looking for a "virtual" seat in the arena.

In an appeal posted on its Web site, the RNC has called on its members to submit video questions via YouTube for the debate being sponsored by CNN, YouTube and the South Carolina Democratic Party. A cartoon posted on the RNC Web site depicts a young man sporting an elephant shirt trying to ask a question of the three Democratic frontrunners: New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama.

The caption underneath the cartoon reads: "Tired of Democrats Dodging the Questions That Really Matter? Click Here To Find Out How To Have Your Questions Answered Live During the Democrat Debate on July 23."

The debate will break new ground because all of the main questions will be posed to the candidates by voters who recorded the queries and posted them on http://www.YouTube.com. A CNN editorial team has been sorting through the questions for weeks and the public will not know what questions will be asked of the candidates until the videos air on CNN that night. CNN’s Anderson Cooper will moderate the 7 p.m.-9 p.m. ET debate which will be held in Charleston.

CNN and YouTube will host a similar debate for Republicans on Sept. 17 in Florida. Further details including the host city will be announced on Friday.

- CNN Political Editor Mark Preston

Filed under: CNN/YouTube Debate
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Ryan, New York, NY

    When's the Republican/Youtube debate so that Democrats can do the same?

    July 17, 2007 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  2. Ron Sangster Saint Louis, MO

    Laughable that the RNC wants to ask questions of the Dems when they have yet to respond to why their unwavering support of the Bush administrations failed policies. Incredible!

    July 17, 2007 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  3. Pixie, Murfreesboro, TN

    This is a fabulous idea if it is applied consistently!

    July 17, 2007 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  4. James Atlanta, GA

    I think this is great. Not so much for Repbulicans vs. Democrats, but for all of us voters. This forum provides us the first opportunity to ask questions to those we do not support. This is great for those who are on the fence to get real clarification on how candidates view speicific issues.

    If anything, it would be great to see debates where registered Democrats quiz Republican candidates, and vice versa. I think it is time to go beyond simple partisanship, and individuals from each party to actually take a real clear look at all candidates. First step towards that will be for non-partisans to think up questions.

    July 17, 2007 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  5. Jeannie in Sacramento, CA

    The Republicans are sinking....going down the tubes with their delusional leader, King George. But while the decider has abandoned ship, the GOP is left to face the future. Of course, they'd want to question the Democrats! How else could they feign any power left in their ranks?

    July 17, 2007 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  6. Tom Dedham, Mass

    Great thought by James from Atlanta.

    No puff ball questions, real tough ones, like if Democrats went on Fox, oh yeah, they already chickened out of that.

    Republicans go on all the networks, even the ones that may ask tough questions.

    July 17, 2007 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  7. Edward, Severna Park, MD

    Yea, but no other network is as "consistently and outspokenly" left-winged as Fox is right-winged.

    I half expect Fox to tell me that there are still WMD's in Iraq...

    July 17, 2007 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  8. Mike, HI

    "Tired of Democrats Dodging the Questions That Really Matter?"

    I'd be interested to know what these questions happen to be, but yeah!

    I'm also tired of most Republicans doing the same thing. Get on that, RNC!

    July 17, 2007 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  9. Jon, Sacramento, CA

    I would much rather have parties stuffing the Youtube in-boxes than the continued voter fraud of deceased voters and imprisoned fellons continuing to cast ballots!

    I do, however, hope the butterfly ballot makes a comeback in the Florida voting regions for this next Presidential election. 🙂

    July 17, 2007 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  10. Jan, Nashua, NH

    Republicans find it "cowardly" that the Democratic candidates won't waste their time going on Fox Noise??? Bah!
    The folks on Fox are such idiots they can't even get the name of the Democratic Party correct.

    I find it far more enlightening that the Republican candidates won't speak to the NAACP.
    To me, that speaks volumes as far as just who the cowards are.

    July 17, 2007 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  11. Tom Dedham, Mass

    Edward from MD, have you ever watched Fox?

    Brit Hume's roundtable contains 2 liberals and 2 conservatives, Hannitty and Colmes speaks for itself and O'Reilly is more of a moderate than anything as some of his nightly mail reflects both liberals and conservatives giving him a hard time for his "biased views" on the same subject believe it or not.

    Read the NYT, watch ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC (especially that highly impartial Keith Olbermann) or listen to NPR and you get one sole viewpoint, liberal.

    Fox is EASILY number one and the MSM is mad as hell that another voice has gotten out.

    Now the Democrats are starting to whine about talk radio being one sided and they want to FORCE liberal shows on the air even though a WHOLE station was dedicated to such and it FAILED miserably.

    Fox is number one because it is NOT just one viewpoint, but many.

    July 17, 2007 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  12. Brian G., Carmel CA


    The reason the liberal tv doesn't do as well is because educated libs aren't watching TV or listening to the radio for our news.

    We're reading it online from as many sources as we can get.

    Conservatives like a top-down approach to information. Liberals like to think for ourselves.

    July 17, 2007 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  13. Brad, Columbia, SC

    "...O’Reilly is more of a moderate than anything..."

    HA! Come on... Why won't conservatives admit that they enjoy viewing programming with a rightward tilt to it?

    Show me a liberal who won't allow that Olbermann, Mahr, etc. have made their opinions on Bush et al. abundantly clear.

    July 18, 2007 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  14. Christine, Lexington, KY

    I think it is a great idea. I am so very tired of CNN not asking hard questions. They let the Dems off easy with small easy questions. I love Fox because it gives you both sides. CNN is to biased. Since the Dems have taken the House they have done nothing. I am ashamed of being a Dem. I am glad I voted for Bush at least he is doing something but complain.

    July 21, 2007 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |