The Debate

Yes, there were some audio problems and yes, the dinging on the phone was not fun. But I thought it went pretty well. The thing that struck me the most about the whole process was that all those questions (and more) came from Democrats all across the state and they’re the same questions Democrats I know have (or at least variations). As nice as it was to have answers to those questions, I think, for me, hearing those questions was more important (since I can’t vote on party chair).

I hope whoever wins is astute enough to realize that all those questions are the concerns of Tennessee Democrats–the ones we got to and the ones that will be sent out later. If people are asking about how we incorporate various factions, it’s because we’re concerned that we’re not doing a good job of that.

Democrats are in a bad spot right now, don’t get me wrong. But those who asked questions gave the eventual winner a real gift.

Edited to add: Braisted has the rundown.

9 thoughts on “The Debate

  1. Interesting observation about the questions. Unfortunately I can hardly remember most of them due to every answer from every candidate being “need messaging, bring factions together”(plus 40 under 40 from Matt for nearly every question). The biggest takeaway for me was how often three men can repeat what amounted to about 80% the same vague statements without offering real concrete action steps.

    Also, if y’all could hear all those bings and bongs then major kudos for not going crazy during the first 15-20 minutes.

  2. Lol, I calls em like I sees em, and that was a very interesting point about the questions. You mentioned “the ones that will be sent out later”, did the contestants answer more questions and are they going to be emailed out?

  3. So, I read this and Braisted’s and I’m still wondering, who’s the frontrunner here? No question my support is behind Matt Kuhn (not based on his performance last night but from knowing what he’s capable of) but I’m curious to know what you and others think.

  4. Lesley, it was interesting because the debate was pretty much a grown up affair, I thought. Wade was strong on several things and Kuhn had some good thoughts as well about uniting the party. Braisted did a pretty good break down of it all.

    The key, for me at least, was unifying a message that embraces this very long and weird sized state. Chip’s message embraced national issues moreso than state ones and his mantra tended to be he needs four more years. I think the newer candidates were formulating that message although it is still a bit unclear of what that message is.

    I thought Wade came out at the end the strongest in the debate. It was a bit hard to watch due to some technical difficulties but all-in-all, I liked the fact that it was matter of fact and that it was handled by the moderators very well with strong questions.

    My two cents about the debate performances …

  5. Lesley, I honestly don’t know. I think Chip has a lot of support, no doubt. And he definitely seemed at ease and thoughtful in the debate and considering that, in effect, it was his performance up for discussion, I was really impressed by that.

    I thought that Matt seemed to have given a great deal of thought, I mean an impressive amount of thought, to a real game plan for how to not just run a party but build a party.

    And I thought Wade was fantastic. If he doesn’t win, the winner would be stupid to not immediately turn around and recruit him to run for something.

    So, I don’t know, myself. Granted, I was busy watching the time and making sure I was following the questions and stuff, so I wasn’t scrutinizing the answers like I would have been if I had been watching it.

  6. Pingback: So who won? : Post Politics: Political News and Views in Tennessee

  7. Good to know–thank you. I’m surprised by Chip’s support when clearly something needs to be done. I don’t know what it is, but we need better and stronger candidates.

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