Civil Discourse Now

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Results: Horning wins, Mourdock beats out Donnelly.

. He recovered, but lost some here. Mourdock followed up with a fast, yet understandable delivery. Horning, as was the case during the entire debate, was steady and understandable. Score: Mourdock and Horning 5 (I don’t believe I have given that rating yet.) Give Donnelly a 3, although he recovered. (Horning’s mike was screwed up in the first segment, but that was not his fault.)

    2) Responsiveness: A so-called debate during an election campaign means candidates are hard-wired to respond with segues and migrate to their campaign talking points. Both Donnelly and Mourd   Tonight’s debate with the candidates for United States from Indiana just ended. My political views as they are, I might surprise readers with my scores, but this is how I see the outcome.

   Let me go through the scoring categories, with a maximum of five points for each.

   1) Delivery: Rep. JoeDonnelly had the most difficult position, initially. If anyone has competed in debate or speech events, the first speaker has a difficult position. He does not know the pace to maintain. A complication tonight was the short time available. Donnelly started out with a slow pace ock were given to this bad habit. Horning had an advantage: the other two candidates virtually ignored him. Therefore, I score Horning 4, Donnelly and Mourdock each 4.

   3) Evidence: As I have said before, in high school and college we used 4" x 6" cards with quotes, from authoritative sources, written on them. Donnelly was weak, but later recovered. I might disagree with Mourdock’s and Horning’s views on specific issues—and on the role of government in our society. Nonetheless, Mourdock’s strikes on his opening were impressive. Horning, too, gave specific examples of shortcomings in our two- (one-party) system. Mourdock: 5; Horning: 5; Donnelly a 4 (begrudgingly).

   4) Demeanor: All three candidates maintained demeanor appropriate to the setting. 2 to Donnelly. This was important to Mourdock as he as a "rep" to overcome, so give him "5.".

   5) Organization: Each candidate seemed well-organized in thought.  Again, each receives a 4.

   6) Gaffes: Nothing major for any of the candidates occurred. Call this a wash, again at a relatively high "4."

   Totals: Donnelly: 3-3-4-4-4-4. Horning: 5-4-5-4-4-4. Donnelly: 3-3-4-4-4-4. Mourdock: 5-3-5-5-4-  Final would be Mourdock: 22; Horning:26; Donnelly: 22 to 15. That score is decent for a high school round. Final: Mourdock won, but not by a lot.

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