Results for - The Debatable Virtue of Televised Political Debates

1,549 voters participated in this survey

1. Do you watch televised political debates? From the following choices please select the one which most closely describes your attitude:

Yes, I'm a real political junkie. Whether it's for a civic, state/provincial or federal election -or party leadership race- I watch as many as I can.
9%
145 votes
I'll usually tune in at least once during a campaign just to keep up with what's happeniing and to see how the candidates handle themselves.
17%
268 votes
Sometimes, but only for certain elections if I'm undecided or it's a hotly contested race.
13%
209 votes
I used to, but I've come to learn that how a candidate performs in a debate reveals very little about their actual leadership skills and how they'll conduct themselves once in power.
11%
167 votes
Not unless I need to sleep and the tranquilizers won't work.
18%
275 votes
Not Applicable
31%
485 votes

2. Have you ever decided who to vote for based on how you thought the candidates performed in a debate?

Yes, and I was completely undecided beforehand or was even persuaded to change my vote and I was aware this was the deciding factor.
5%
85 votes
Perhaps I have been influenced by a debate when undecided but as far as I am aware it has never been the deciding factor.
14%
219 votes
I can't say either of the above is true for me but It has at least once convinced me to go the way I was already leaning.
9%
137 votes
No, I've watched debates but I can honestly say that I have always made up my mind who to vote for independent of anything I've ever heard or seen in a debate and I do not always vote for the same party.
26%
405 votes
Not applicable - either I don't vote or don't watch debates or always vote for the same party no matter what.
45%
703 votes

3. Do you believe, as a rule, that televised political debates provide an in-depth and illumimating examination of the most important issues of the day and offer thoughtful and innovative solutions to the problems which most plague society? Please select the answer which most closely reflects your view:

Yes, I believe TV debates offer open and informative discussions on only those issues which most affect people's everyday lives, revealing a candidate's true thoughts and feelings which unapologetically invite citizens to vote otherwise if they disagree.
15%
239 votes
No, I think what we mostly get from these debates are platitudes and slogans, all designed to generate the snappiest sound bites where the main objectives are to belittle the opposition and gain favor by pandering to people's basest fears and biases.
33%
514 votes
It doesn't matter to me if they offer anything valid or substantial at all, I watch debates as I would watch any other competetive reality show like Survivor or The Amazing Race... solely for its entertainment value, the pure sport of it.
10%
162 votes
Not applicable - I've never watched a debate before... if that makes me apathetic, well, I just don't care
41%
634 votes

4. Most every political debate consists mainly of vacuous speechifying ("I believe in positive change, family values and that children are the future, yadda, yadda...") where much of the time otherwise is spent in misrepresenting the other's record and positions and then attacking or having to defend against those misrepresentations so that it all just degenerates into an endless stream of inane nattering ('oh yes you did/will..., oh no I didn't/won't..."). Would you like to see the fornat of TV debates changed to something more along the lines where each candidate would be questioned by a representative panel of journalists and could speak only to their own positions and record and the panel could follow up on any obviously false, nonsensical or incomplete response? From the following please select the answer you most agree with:

Yes, something like that would be preferable or maybe there is another idea for format change that is even better but it's certain that something needs to be done because as it stands now these things are just unwatchable.
39%
598 votes
No, I like all the demagoguery, name-calling and the pointless arguments over who is more against poverty and crime and all the other bad things. Just keep them the way they are, as close to being like the Jerry Springer Show as they can make them.
16%
252 votes
Not applicable - I don't watch debates.
45%
699 votes
10/13/2015 Politics 1549 25 Anonymous

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