Sunday, August 05, 2007

If you could be any kind of a flower

Yesterday the leading Democratic Presidential candidates took questions from bloggers at the YearlyKos convention. Beyond demonstrating the power of the so-called "netroots," (but remember that in 2004 Howard Dean was the darling of the blogosphere for all the good it did him in the primaries), it's not clear how this debate helped potential voters make up their minds. Not clear to me, at least, because I didn't watch. Admittedly, I'm not a complete political junkie, but I suspect that no more than 2-5% of voters follow the campaign a lot more closely than I do, and I'm already over-saturated. Edwards takes a veiled shot at Obama as being too conciliatory, hoping to portray himself as the outsider. Obama wants to fuel the perception of a two-person race, and so he ignores Edwards and goes after Clinton, making himself the agent of change. Clinton tries to solidify her front-runner status as above the fray, while still taking a shot or two at Obama. Richardson touts himself as the real get-out-of-Iraq-now candidate. Gravel stares at the camera. At least that's what I'm guessing happened.

Anyway, I feel bad that as a blogger I missed my chance to ask the candidates questions. So, in case the campaigns are taking follow-ups, here's mine: If you could amend the Constitution, how would you amend it? Answers that say "I wouldn't do so unilaterally because I believe in the Article V mechanism" will be disqualified for fighting the hypo. Assume that any amendments you propose would be passed by Congress and ratified by the States on the strength of your persuasive skills as President.

9 comments:

egarber said...

That would be a good way to see if a candidate can think on his / her feet about the potential traps.

For example, it might be easy to say something like, "I'd push for a privacy amendment." But that would create an opening for a damaging follow up: "So that must mean you don't believe the constitution CURRENTLY protects privacy."

It might be easy to reply that such an amendment would put the issue to bed once and for all, but still, that exchange could create interesting fodder.

Sobek said...

That's exactly why that kind of question won't get asked -- not by a YearlyKos attendee, of a Democratic candidate. Asking your candidate to take a position which will necessarily provide ammunition for opponents is not something that a thoughtful activist does (generally speaking).

John said...

Presidents have no say in either passing or ratifying ammendments to the constitution. So why would you even bother to ask a presidential candidate this question?

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