There’s a beauty pageant for GOP presidential candidates on Fox tomorrow night. It’s not a debate; you can’t put ten people, let alone all seventeen declared elephant riders, on one stage and conduct a real debate (see my July 8 post on debate tournament format to see how Fox could produce for more legitimate, informative, and entertaining debates).
Being left out of the first debate might not be fatal to their candidacy, but it would be hard to argue that it is helpful. Really, shouldn’t voters have the opportunity to hear from a candidate who just recently entered the race, like Jindal? It might be understandable that the media would want to eliminate a few candidates so the stage isn’t so crowded, but is that fair to the candidates… and voters? [Gordon Howie, “An Election Without Polls,” The Right Side, 2015.08.05]
Recently entered? Bobby Jindal announced on June 24. Chris Christie announced June 30. Scott Walker announced July 13. John Kasich announced July 21. Christie, Walker, and Kasich all made the Fox pageant cut. Everyone in the above average from Christie on down is likely within the margin of error, meaning Christie and Kasich enjoy positions above Jindal by random luck, not merit. But note that Donald Trump and Jeb Bush announced their candidacies only one week and change before Jindal. Howie can find plenty of reasons to gripe about Fox’s pageant choices, but recent entry does not appear to be among the legitimate reasons to deem Fox’s methodology flawed and arbitrary.