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Reporter Turns Up Alternate Debate Transcript
Jim Lehrer: Welcome to the second presidential debate between Vice President Al Gore and Gov. George W. Bush. The candidates have agreed on these rules: I will ask a question. The candidate will ignore the question and deliver rehearsed remarks designed to appeal to undecided women voters. The opponent will then have one minute to respond by trying to frighten senior citizens into voting for him. When a speaker's time has expired, I will whimper softly while he continues to spew incomprehensible statistics for three more minutes. Let's start with the vice president. Mr. Gore, can you give us the name of a downtrodden citizen and then tell us his or her story in a way that strains the bounds of common sense?
Gore: As I was saying to Tipper last night after we tenderly made love the way we have so often during the 30 years of our rock-solid marriage, the downtrodden have a clear choice in this election. My opponent wants to cut taxes for the richest 1 percent of Americans. I, on the other hand, want to put the richest 1 percent in an iron clad lockbox so they can't hurt old people like Roberta Frampinhamper, who is here tonight. Mrs. Frampinhamper has been selling her internal organs, one by one, to pay for gas so that she can travel to these debates and personify problems for me. Also, her poodle has arthritis.
Lehrer: Gov. Bush, your rebuttal.
Lehrer: Let's turn to foreign affairs. Gov. Bush, if Slobodan Milosevic were
to launch a bid to return to power in Yugoslavia, would you be able to
pronounce his name?
Lehrer: Mr. Gore, your rebuttal.
Lehrer: Vice President Gore, how would you reform the Social Security
Lehrer: Gov. Bush?
Lehrer: It's time for closing statements.
Bush: It's time to put aside the partisanship of the past by electing no one but Republicans.
Lehrer: Good night.
--Joe Blundo, Columbus Dispatch
A feisty Al Gore without debating tics and a sober George Bush who gave the game away by winking and grimacing at members of the audience behind Gore's back clashed in the last and best debate of the presidential campaign season, a town hall forum in the field house of Washington University in St. Louis this evening. Bush chose to slow down his delivery on most answers and turned his volume down as well in an attempt to appear attractive to that major bloc of voters who have yet to commit: suburban soccer moms and waitresses, wanting to decide on the issues, but wanting to be spoken to nicely while deciding. Bush threw in lots of pauses and "uh...uh's" in his version of appearing presidential. (He even offered a mini-lesson on how to pronounce "CEN-SOR-SHIP" and "DE-CI-SIONS.") Gore was more like himself, more like he was during his acceptance speech at the Democratic Convention in August. Serious, energetic, concerned, filled with ideas, facts, and plans. As the campaign winds down, both men are reverting to political type. In most every question, Bush saw himself as the Washington outsider, the man who would transcend the ills of party politics and bring people together, the goal being to dismantle big government and let folks be. Gore used questions to portray himself as a D.C. insider who has actually shrunk the Washington bureaucracy while Bush's Texas administration has gotten bigger, a man of the people who knows his way around the pillars of power and wants to continue his fight against selected big corporations in the name of the people. As Gore pointed out, while Bush was in private business working for himself and getting rich, Gore was in government working for the people and getting fewer rewards.
For those who have been following the candidates for any length of time, the responses were seldom new, meaning Bush is still laboring uphill to convince voters about his tax cut, his social security plan, and his various healthcare proposals. On the other hand, he did well with his foreign affair and military proposals. Bush's best answers of the evening were his articulation of the use of military resources and a badly needed affirmation of the seriousness he pays to executions in Texas. He also did fairly well on lowering the cost of drugs, why he would be the best candidate in a foreign policy crisis, how he would help family farms, why the wealthiest 1% should be freed from an inheritance tax, and how to get young people to the voting booths. Bush was the most passionate on this question because it allowed him to talk about changing the tone in Washington, an answer he's been working on for 17 months. Bush is nothing, if not disciplined. His performance this evening was a rehash of pluses and minuses from previous speeches and debates with nothing new or imaginative offered. His two worst responses, in fact, came about when he was confronted with new material. He drew a blank when asked how his educational plan held parents responsible. He was also at a loss to give a relevant answer to a woman in the audience who wanted to know what his tax cut would do for her. She was 35, single, with no dependents.
After Gore went much too far in turning down the heat in the second debate, he tried for a combination of the over-the-top aggressiveness of the first debate and the out-of-character placidity of the second. It worked. Gore came off as poised, intelligent, fair, and unwilling to take any guff. In this debate, Bush's performance seemed affected at times. Gore earned full credit (there were 20 questions total, for 5 points each) for answers to questions about dealing with doctors, not HMO's, lowering the cost of drugs, providing healthcare for everyone, teachers' pay, gun safety, family farms, inheritance taxes, young voters, affirmative action, targeted tax cuts, and keeping promises when in office. His weakest responses dealt with questions of capitol punishment, gun control, and parental accountability in education. Neither candidate wants to lean on the voters. On the other hand, Gore came up with the most imaginative response of the evening. Talking about how much of Bush's tax cut would go to the wealthiest 1%, Gore said to the audience, "If everyone here in this audience was in the dead middle of the middle class, then the tax cuts for every single one of you, all added up, would be less than the tax cut [Bush's] plan would give to just one member of that top, wealthiest, one percent. Now you judge for yourselves whether or not that's fair." At that, the camera dutifully panned the audience from a position high in the rafters of the field house. It was Gore's night. --Bill Brasin, 10/17/00
Jennifer Writes... I am a Gore supporter (I mean really there is no other option) and am completely dumbfounded by the TV media post debate coverage. If I didn't think it was a total waste of my time I would write in and suggest to the networks (esp. MSNBC and CNN) that they should preface each news blurb with a disclaimer that "the information you are about to hear should be used for entertainment purposes only." I honestly can see a little bit of partisan reporting between segments and guests, but this is really getting ridiculous. The depth of Bush's understanding about anything comes down to his answer to the single women and what his tax plan would offer her. Even if Bush's tax plan would give her something - HE HAD NO IDEA! Three weeks from the election and he had NO IDEA! None. His answer to her made me embarrassed for him. Not only did he not answer the question, he babbled something about Medicare and then the military! MY mind goes absolutely numb thinking that ANYONE sees this man as a potential president.
Tim Writes... I just don't get how half the electorate still perceive Bush as likeable, given his stumbling performances in the debates. If it's a question of who you'd rather sit down and have a beer with, well, how many Presidents have any of us had a beer with? (Thanks Rob Morse of the SF Examiner.) If the polling numbers don't change soon, maybe Gore should just start going after Nader voters, where it makes a huge difference where I live (Oregon). I wonder if the "liberal" press will be hammering Gore again for "lying" about Texas's health care record (it's really 49th, not 50th, you lying scumbag you) and not Bush's record of opposing legislation and then taking credit for it when he's forced to by overwhelming Texas State Lege support (i.e., the right to sue and HMO).
Bev Writes... There is absolutely no question in my mind that Gore has what it takes to become President. Bush is not capable of forming complete sentences using correct English, nor using a string of sentences to articulate a congruent thought. To me, that disqualifies him. He is not ready, not capable, not professional, not suited with temperament, and lacks the intellectual curiosity to even be considered. I have visited with many Bush supporters on line and something sticks out with them. It's not so much a vote for Bush as it is a vote against Clinton/Gore because of the Lewinsky scandal. How shallow! Bush is for transferral of power from government to huge corporations, which give me a clue that money rules his world and favors to his friends and contributors are what influence his so-called principals. he could care less about little people in the same manner he is indifferent to those who are executed in his state. Heartless, regardless of what rhetoric he expounds. Unbelievable.
Jim Writes... This last joint appearance by the two candidates was amazing on several levels. First, the "teacher's pet" issue. Gore was able to answer questions as posed, largely on point, largely well supported by facts. Bush sat back, mugged and winked at the audience and set out vagaries. It reminded me of the days in school when the class clown would recruit others in class to ridicule those students who were prepared with the same repertoir Mr. Bush employed. While it was fun to do and watch when I was in fourth grade, somehow at the candidates' ages it comes off as juvenile. The frightening thought is that those watching thought this tactic made Bush seem more likable. Secondly, Bush did frankly acknowledge that "of course" the rich got more under his tax plan. No evasions, just a flat acknowledgement. Let's see how it plays out there in the electorate. Finally, the Vice-President utterly whiffed on the death penalty issue. There's far too much evidence that Texas's record on the death penalty is poorly administered. Bush vetoed a bill to improve legal representation for poor in criminal cases. He's executed the retarded and those not competent to understand what was happening. Gore simply let it all slide. Opposing unfair administration of the death penalty is not the same as opposing the death penalty. A missed opportunity.
Doris Writes... If the pundits call this one a "draw" or give it to Bush, we'll have to find out what drugs they're taking. I suppose it may be that people who watch television frequently have gotten used to Bush's stage presence. I kept getting so appalled by it I actually turned my back on the TV for a while. Listening to him is rough; watching him is almost unbearable. I look into those oddly blinking little eyes and see . . . nothing. He has two tiny brown marbles in his head where other people have eyes. And did you see him swaying, hands clasped at his crotch, like some little kid about to recite "The Wreck of the Hesperus" for the PTA Honors Night? Where is this "charm" they keep telling me about? To quote Bush himself, "Um . . . uh . . . "
Arthur Writes... Thanks Al. This debate made me proud to be a Democrat. Bush threw the entire kitchen sink of the Republican boiler room campaign slanders at Gore, only to have them repeatedly answered, rebutted, countered, and reversed to reflect back on Bush's record. Bush often will attack another for what may be his own personal weakness, i.e., the best defense on an issue is to attack your opponent on that issue first! Looked at in that light, it is interesting to examine the issues that Bush tried to mudsling at Gore, in the light of Bush's own spotty record.
Steve Writes...Those people in the audience wanted answers but they didnt get any answers from Gov. Smirk. Did you hear the number of times Bushlite snickered and laughed in the Background? Did you hear the number of times Bushlite offered comments , stupid, trivial comments when he should have kept silent? Bushlite offered no reason to change horses in the middle of the stream. Bushlite kept wandering off the subject, and didnt complete sentences and thoughts. Gore was presidential, he stood tall, he approached the people, he was alert. He didnt snicker or smirk like Bushlite did. Gore kept hammering on the differences and Bushlite couldnt explain his positions or in some cases even if he had a postion. Gore proved he would fight big business, big Oil and big drug companies and Bushlite proved he would be in bed with them. Gore destroyed Bushlite. Bush spent the whole evening trying to evade questions and not answer them. Bush unraveled. He was unfocused, unsure of his facts, unresponsive to questions and generally exuded a sense of being far out of his depth. That's what happens when the people instead of so-called journalists ask the questions. Real people in the audience seems to be the best format.
Don Writes...The Veep cleaned Bush's clock tonight! Bush could do nothing but recite platitudes; when asked for specifics, he recited more platitudes. Too bad he had to play classroom tattle-tale too, he was terrified of th question from Gore about the SUpremes decision on Affirmative Action. Hell, Bush may not know what the Supreme Court is, never mind a decision on AA.
Now I know why Poppy Bush kept looking at his watch during his debate with Clinton, because I was doing the same during the Gore-Tex debate this evening in Boston. Maybe it's because I've been listening to the same canned responses to the same policy questions for about six months, but this first televised confrontation between candidates seemed to run out of gas at around the 60 minute mark, when moderator Jim Lehrer asked Gore-Tex to describe how an episode in which they dealt with an unexpected crisis indicated their leadership under fire. Gore talked about rigging up a peace agreement during the Kosovo conflict, then wandered off into the thicket about how, if he were president, he would fight for the people against the corporations. Having had a few minutes to think about his answer, Bush remembered floods in Texas and how his heart went out to the survivors. Maybe it will make more sense when we read the transcript tomorrow. Then there was the answer to Lehrer's question about what to do about Milosevic. Bush said we needed a strong DIP-LO-MA-TIC hand. He said the word with emphasis and very slowly, hesitating after each syllable. He also talked about living in a DE-MOC-RA-CY. He further said that we should get Russia to talk to Milosevic. He said that twice in a short response, so it must have been important. He also said that it was time for Milosevic to go. He said that twice. I looked at my watch.
While Bush became more at ease towards the end of the debate, he generally appeared under pressure, sniffing, pouting his lips, mumbling, sighing, saying "um" a lot. Gore was more animated and smiled a lot. His tone suggested that he was trying to be patient with Bush, correcting him on his numbers and his distortions of fact. Bush, growing petulant, began to attack Gore as a Washington insider who used "fuzzy math" to win an argument. Luckily, tomorrow's transcript will speak for itself, but Bush kept repeating the same distortions of his tax plan that economist Paul Krugman called him on in the NYT a week ago:
"There's about $4.6 trillion of surplus projected," he declared, which is true, even if the projections are dubious. He then went on to say: "I want some of the money, nearly a trillion, to go to projects like prescription drugs for seniors. Money to strengthen the military to keep the peace. I've got some views about education around the world. I want to — you know, I've got some money in there for the environment." Nearly a trillion? The budget statement released by the candidate's campaign three weeks ago shows total spending on new projects of $474.6 billion — less than half a trillion. Mr. Bush presumably wants to convey the sense that he's a compassionate guy who really cares about education, the environment and all that. But that doesn't excuse claiming to spend twice as much on these good things as the number given in his own budget. He continued: "But there's still a quarter unspent, about $1.3 trillion [the size of Mr. Bush's tax cut]. I think we ought to send it back to the people who pay the bills." Alas, 4 times 1.3 is 5.2, not 4.6 — and anyway, the full budget cost of that tax cut, including interest, is $1.6 trillion, more than a third of the projected surplus. Next came Social Security. Here a bit of explanation is needed. The reason Social Security is in trouble is that the system has a large "hole" — basically a hidden debt — because previous generations of retirees were paid benefits out of the contributions of younger workers. That hole also means that you can't justify privatizing Social Security — which Mr. Bush advocates — by comparing the rate of return that an individual could get by investing in government bonds and the implied rate of return on his Social Security contributions. That comparison ignores a multitrillion-dollar debt that somebody has to pay. Mr. Bush, wasting no time, went straight to that bogus comparison. "But the safest of all safe — of about 4 percent [a reference to government bonds] — is twice what they get in the Social Security trust today." Is there any way to explain away Mr. Bush's remarks — three major self-serving misstatements in the course of only a couple of minutes? Not that I can see. We're not talking questionable economic analysis here, just facts: what Mr. Bush said to that national television audience simply wasn't true."
What it all boiled down to during the debate was Bush kept using the above numbers, Gore kept calling him on it, and Bush kept saying Gore is a product of Washington "fuzzy math." Gore ended up by suggesting that Bush had resorted to calling him names rather than backing up his numbers. Characteristically, Bush's common defense in such situations is to use the old, "I know what you are, but what am I?" Fuzzy math, indeed.
Tonight's scoring was based on 12 Lehrer questions plus a 13th category for presentation, which was described above. Gore got an 8 out of 10 for presentation, Bush got a 6. The questions were more complicated to score, since the person with the rebuttal had time to prepare an answer. Thus, the person who had to answer first could earn up to 10 points, while the person who rebutted was given up to three points, plus or minus. Points were deducted for obvious misinformation. Here is my analysis of the first five questions. The others will be discussed later today. --Bill Brasin, 10/4/00
Question #1 To Gore: Yoiu've questioned Bush's experience. What exactly do you mean? Gore answered that he questioned Bush's proposals, not his experience, and went on to outline his own proposals by way of contrast. Bush, in turn, went over his proposals, but was the victim of "fuzzy math," calling O.6 trillion dollars 1/4 of 4.6 trillion dollars. Further, while Bush went on to say he would spend another 1/4 of the surplus for "important projects," his official proposal indicates that it is actually less than 1/8. Actually, both men ignored Lehrer's question and argued about the specifics of their proposals. Bush accused Gore of using "phony numbers," which gave Gore a reason to indicate that the wealthiest 1% would get as much in tax cuts as Bush is spending for health care, drugs, education, and national defense combined." Bush disagreed, but refused to furnish facts. Score: Gore 8, Bush -3, for "fuzzy math."
Question #2 To Bush: You've questioned Gore's leadership skills. What do you mean by that? Bush began strong with his theme that the Clinton/Gore administration had 8 years to lead in such areas as prescription drugs, Medicare, and Social Security, and failed. So it's time for a change. Gore responded that 95% of seniors under the Bush drug plan would not get anything for the first four years, which is correct. Gore went on with a new attack linking Bush's actions as Governor of Texas with his proposed actions as president. The first thing Bush did as governor this term was to give an emergency tax cut to the oil industry. Gore pointed out that, as president, Bush would give an immediate tax cut to the wealthy, but seniors would have to wait four years for a cut on drug costs. Bush responded by calling Gore's comments "Mediscare," but did not attempt to refute the facts. This is the way the rest of the discussion went. Every time Bush responded by calling names but not provided facts to refute Gore, he lost points. Bush's first response earned him an 8, but by the time he was finished that became a 5. Gore lost points on style and not rebutting Bush's comments on Social Security, but began to get under Bush's skin. Bush's comment that Gore not only invented the internet, but he invented the calculator was a low blow, considering that Bush was unable to provide facts and figures to back up his generalizations. Lehrer decided to continue the discussion and Gore caught Bush on several points of misrepresentation, as the transcript indicates. Score: Bush 5, Gore 1
Question #3 To Gore: How would you contrast your plan to prevent future oil problems with Bush's. Both candidates made their differing positions clear, and this was Bush's best answer, as it often was during the primary debates. Bush would stress creating greater supplies by more exploration, including exploration on environmentally sensitive land, such as in Alaska. Gore is more concerned about protecting such land and, while working to ensure supply, would stress methods of conservation, which Bush did not appear to be interested in. Score: Bush 9, Gore 3.
Question #4 To Bush: If elected, would you try to overturn the FDA's approval of the abortion pill RU-486? While Bush said he couldn't do that as president, this is not correct, as Lehrer lated implied while questioning Bush further. At that point Bush said that a president can't "unilaterally" overturn the decision. (Dah.) Gore then called Bush on it, saying that Bush said two days ago that he "would order his FDA appointee to review the decision." Bush responded that he would do that to make sure the drug is safe, which is what the FDA spent 12 years demonstrating. Gore went on to accuse Bush of using code words in his discussion of abortion in relation to the selection of judges for the Supreme Court. (The new president will select two or three, and perhaps as many as four, thus creating the very cultural direction in our society for many years to come.) Gore pointed out that Bush has promised to select judges like Scalia and Thomas, who would then overturn Roe vs. Wade. Gore said he would do the opposite. Bush lost points he had already earned by previously stating his "strict constructionist," Constitution as a "sacred" book like the Bible philosophy. He refused to answer Lehrer question: Is "strict constructionist" a code word for overturning Roe vs. Wade? Bush's problem, here, is he wants to get a larger percentage of the women's vote but doesn't want to say he is an active anti-abortionist, which he clearly is. Score: Bush 6, Gore 3.
Question #5 To Gore: If Milosevic refuses to accept the election results, what should the U.S. do to get him to leave? This was Gore's home run question, and he did quite well with it. He knew the names and could pronounce them, he knew the history and articulated it succinctly, and his suggestion to apply sanctions in a measured way made sense. Bush, on the other hand, feeling pressure, began to slow down and pause as many viewers must have recalled his failures with foreign policy history and the pronunciation of foreign names. This was the first presidential debate I every saw where a candidate pronunced common words, syllable by syllabe, pausing between each syllable. DI-PLO-MA-CY....DEM-OC-RA-CY. That, and carefully repeating key sentences more than once in a short answer. Not a pretty sight. Then came the crusher. Bush suggested that if he were president he would ask Russia to intervene and convince Milosevic that it was time to go. Gore reminded him that Russia is on record as backing Milosevic, "Well, obviously," answered Bush, "we wouldn't use the Russians if they didn't agree." I was reminded of Jerry Ford. Score: Gore 10, Bush-3.
All in all, a magnificently entertaining day, taking into account the football-shaped sugar cookies with Springboro-blue icing produced by the third-grade boosters, and it inspired my current theory about the presidential debates. You think I'm going to say that NBC is on the right track, but I'm not. I can't honestly see why watching one set of corporate-sponsored millionaires engaging in a slickly-professional mock battle is any more worthwhile than watching the other. If they were going to put the third-graders on, though, it would be different. The pre-teen set brings a kind of spontaneous Brechtian sensibility to the organized spectacle, cheerfully demystifying the macho ethos of sport. And besides, they look like Calvin and Hobbes when they run around in those uniforms. All we're gonna get on TV on Tuesday is "on message" ritual, utterly devoid of either the sublime or the ridiculous.
I have, though, been wondering what would happen if Barbara and Pauline were allowed to stand on the edge of the stage and scream, clap, run around and bark out advice during the debates. On the whole I think this would improve the whole sorry spectacle a great deal, even without the inclusion of Ralph and Rose. (I would give ten years of my life to see Rose Nader up there refusing to be patronized by Barbara Bush. I really would.) The addition of about 45 third-grade girls with poms-poms wouldn't hurt, either. Hell, I'd even bake cookies. --Doris from Des Moines, 10/2/00
NYT: GORE-TEX PLAY MIND GAMES AS DEBATE NEARS. 10/3/00
WP: GORE-TEX STAY LIGHT BEFORE DEBATE. 10/3/00
MEARS: RATING THE DEBATERS. 10/3/00
CT: QUESTIONS FOR DEBATE. 10/3/00
SALON: TEN QUESTIONS FOR GORE-TEX. 10/3/00
BG: GORE'S READY TO ROLL. 10/3/00
NYT: HOW "JUST FOLKS" HELPED GORE PREPARE. 10/3/00
DIONNE: GORE SHOULD CHALLENGE BUSH'S VAGUE POLICIES. 10/3/00
BG: BUSH FACES HIS BIGGEST TEST. 10/3/00
SHRIBMAN: MOMENTS THAT MATTER. 10/3/00
BLOOM: 29% WILL USE DEBATES TO HELP DECIDE. 10/3/00
WP: MANY VOTERS UNINTERESTED IN DEBATE. 10/3/00
BG: UNDECIDED WOMEN LOOK TO DEBATE. 10/3/00
BG: BOSTON'S READY FOR A BIG DAY. 10/3/00
AP: PAT AND RALPH WANT IN ON DEBATES. 10/3/00
BG: PARTY LEADERS, SUPPORTERS GET THE SEATS. 10/3/00
REUTERS: NADER WANTS ONE OF THOSE SEATS. 10/3/00
10/3/00" target=x>KENNARD: FOX AND NBC RENEGE ON A DEBT. 10/3/00
AP: FOX TRIES TO MAKE IT UP TO GORE-TEX. 10/3/00
BRODER: NBC'S SHAME. 10/3/00
KURTZ: PRESS STRIKES UP DEBATE CHAOS. 10/3/00
COLLINS: NOW THE PUBLIC IS REALLY INTERESTED, RIGHT? 10/3/00
VENNOCHI: IT'S ALL A BLUR, ISN'T IT? 10/3/00
FT: BUSH TO ATTACK GORE OVER OIL. 10/2/00
BS: GORE HOLDS ELECTORAL LEAD GOING INTO DEBATES. 10/2/00
AP: GORE-TEX REHEARSE FOR DEBATE. 10/2/00
WP: BUSH LACKS CONSISTENCY AS DEBATER. 10/2/00
WP: "REAL PEOPLE" ADVISE GORE TO STAY LOOSE. 10/2/00
WP: STYLE, TONE KEY TO GORE'S DEBATE SUCCESS. 10/2/00
AP: BUSH BEGINS TRIP TO BOSTON. 10/2/00
BG: MANY VOTERS TAKE HOLISTIC APPROACH TO DEBATES. 10/2/00
NYT: GORE PLANS TO CENTER ON SUBSTANCE. 10/2/00
NYT: GORE'S IMAGE IS FOCUSED AND RELENTLESS. 10/2/00
TURQUE: A VIEWER'S GUIDE TO GORE. 10/2/00
NEWSWEEK: GORE-TEX GOING INTO DEBATE TIED. 10/2/00
ALTER: LOOK FOR A FEW DEBATE SURPRISES. 10/2/00
REUTERS: GORE CALLS DEBATE JOB INTERVIEW. 10/2/00
TIME: BUSH CAMP WORKING TO LOWER EXPECTATIONS. 10/2/00
AP: GORE-TEX PREPARE FOR FIRST DEBATES. 10/1/00
NYT ED: DEBATES CREATE "MYSTERIOUS MIXTURE" FOR VOTERS. 10/1/00
NYT: DEBATES NOW SEEN AS HUGE RE ELECTION. 10/1/00
NYT: GORE'S AT DEBATE CAMP WITH CITIZENS. 10/1/00
MORRIS: WILL SOMEBODY PLEASE SAY SOMETHING? 10/1/00
BG: GORE-TEX WILL ATTEMPT TO MAKE DIFFERENCES SHARP IN DEBATES. 10/1/00
LAT: ELECTION OUTCOME MAY TURN ON DEBATES. 10/1/00
CST: THE DEBATE WITHIN THE DEBATE. 10/1/00
REUTERS: GORE SHARPENS DEBATE SKILLS AT SHARK CENTER. 9/30/00
BG: CONFIDENT BUSH PREPARES FOR PIVITAL MOMENT. 9/30/00
WP: FORENSIC EVIDENCE LINKS BUSH MEDIA AIDE TO DABATE
NYHAN: FREE ADVICE TO THE DEBATERS. 9/30/00
AP: DEBATE QUESTIONS FROM MAIN STREET. 9/30/00
WEINGARTEN: CANDIDATES SHOULD CREATE LOW EXPECTATIONS. 9/30/00
KURTZ: NBC NOW SAYS DEBATE CHOICE UP TO LOCALS. 9/30/00
BRODER: HOW TO SCORE THE DEBATES. 9/30/00
AP: DOLE HAS DEBATE ADVICE FOR BUSH. 9/30/00
GOODWIN: DEBATE TIPS FROM JFK. 9/30/00
BS: DEBATES CAN HELP WELL-PREPARED VOTER. 9/30/00
NADER: WHY VOTERS WILL LOSE IN TUESDAY'S DEBATES. 9/30/00
USA: INDEPENDENT 10% LOOK TO DEBATES. 9/30/00