A bit of post-debate clean-up before moving on:
— Media Nation commenters obviously don’t like the idea of excluding anyone from future gubernatorial debates. Fair enough. But I still think that at least one or two debates ought to focus on candidates who actually have some remote chance of winning. If it were up to me, I’d have a few debates featuring just Deval Patrick and Kerry Healey, and a few with Christy Mihos and Grace Ross as well. (A Mihos-Ross match-up? Sure, why not? Anyone going to televise it? Uh, I don’t think so.)
But one point that comes up over and over really needs to be addressed, and that’s the notion that anyone who qualifies for the ballot deserves to be invited. Ballot qualifications are determined by the government; debates are sponsored by non-governmental bodies. It used to be the League of Women Voters. These days, more often than not, it’s a media organization.
For debate organizers, the fact that a candidate is on the ballot is merely one consideration to take into account. It’s amazing to me that people who are otherwise quite independent think the media ought to take dictation from the government regarding debate invitations.
— This has been much-blogged-on already, but in case you missed it elsewhere, you’ve got to see Emily Rooney’s post on the “amateurish” performance of WFXT-TV (Channel 25), which sponsored the debate along with the Boston Herald.
— Ditto for sharp-eared Phoenix writer Adam Reilly, who was listening when Jim Braude and Margery Eagan, on WTKK Radio (96.9 FM), revealed that “ordinary voter” Shonda Schilling not only isn’t ordinary — she also isn’t a voter.