Horse Trading Rules in Debates
The horse trading that went on to establish the Cheney-Edwards debate rules is telling of Republican fears. Both men will be seated at a table instead of standing in a town hall setting. Why? The Washington Post reports,
Republicans feared such a format would allow Edwards to walk about like a lawyer giving a closing statement and maximize his presumed skill in engaging with ordinary voters. Tad Devine, a Kerry consultant, said this format was one of the concessions the Democratic side made in exchange for Bush's side agreeing to three presidential debates.
Strategically, here's what to expect. Cheney will play the 9/11 card. According to a Republican strategist,
...the vice president will try to bring fresh attention to the themes "that shoot out of the 9/11 set of memories and issues -- preparedness, safety and homeland security."
Edwards, on the other hand, is expected to play up the Administration's failures.
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