Anytime there is an election underway especially in the US the media would often anticipate the presidential debate and make it notional events of great importance. At times people have compared it to the kind of super bowl of American politics. However, in the midlist of all these frenzies, some have argued that no scientific data that show the impacts of these debates on the voter result. However, there is often a view that the discussions still play a crucial role other than merely influencing the results.
One of the roles that the debates play is that it helps to make the electorate understand the contenders in a better way. However, on the reason that they influence the results, it remains an issue of contention. In the cases where the contenders or one of them is not known to the public, then the debates might play the role of helping to make people understand the contenders. A case in point is in the John F Kennedy election, he notably worn over the electorate due to the televised debates. Therefore, at the end of the discussions, the people get a chance to understand the policies that the individual are supporting and the reason that they are seeking to get elected. Thus in the cases of making the candidates known to the electorate, one might say that they play a significant role (Ordway and Wihbey).
Besides, the debates play an essential role in making the electorate to make two judgments: first they get the chance to decide whether the candidate seems big enough and if they can be president. Secondly, they can help to make the electorate decide whether either of the candidates is a better choice. A case in point is the 2008 election of McCain and Obama. The televised debates and the analysis after that provide a better chance for the two candidates to battle out their ideas. It was a time when the people could make clear the ideologies they support and how these ideologies were going to impact the lives of the ordinary citizens. Therefore, these debates played an essential role in being able to make clear the competing idea between the different contenders. People were able to sift through the thoughts and thus create an informed choice (Ordway and Wihbey).
Another impact of the debates is that it plays an essential role in agenda setting. The salience of specific policy during a campaign can play a role in being a strength or on the other hand a weakness. People might decide to vote for a candidate based on the agenda that they have. During the debates, the candidates get the chance to set the plan for the elections. Therefore, one that has a definite plan might have a better chance of winning an election than one that has a weekly agenda. Thus, the debates might have such a huge role.
In a nutshell, there is all reason to agree that the televised debates might have such a significant impact on the elections. The simple thinking is that through these debates, people not only a chance to understand their politicians; but also the policies that they have for the citizens. Therefore, the individual that seems to present the most compelling idea might get the chance to still the public opinion. Besides, the debates set the agenda for the election. Therefore, the discussions have an essential role in influence the polls.
Ordway, Denise-Marie, and John Wihbey. “Presidential Debates and Their Effects: Research Roundup.” Journalist’s Resource. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Mar. 2019.