Our View: No fair winner of Democratic debate

KS Editors

Despite what various political pundits, candidates and anybody on social media may say, declaring a winner in Tuesday’s Democratic debate isn’t possible because all candidates weren’t given equal opportunities to win.

Frontrunners Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders combined for nearly an hour of speaking time, and the remaining three candidates only spoke for a collective 41 minutes. And the most recent GOP Debate wasn’t any better, either, as candidate Donald Trump spoke for just under 19 minutes.

Although a much smaller number than Clinton’s 30 minutes, Trump still spoke twice as long as candidates Mike Huckabee and Scott Walker, this coming in a field of 11 candidates in their main debate.

It’s unclear what the immediate solution is to getting other candidates time to speak on national television, but we argue it’s necessary. On one hand, it’s the candidate’s responsibility to get their vision for the United States out to the forum, but among the media circus candidates like Trump, Clinton and Sanders create, it’s absolutely crucial we get a chance to hear what everyone on stage has to say.

Sanders is a prime example of why this is important: his increased speaking time in Tuesday’s debate caused a tremendous spike in his social media following, and democratic socialism, a political stance Sanders identifies with that was once relatively unheard of, is now being rampantly searched on Merriam-Webster.

Before we crown Sanders or Clinton the winner in Tuesday’s debate, or before we assume Trump is the only thing the Republican party has to offer based on media coverage, it’s important we push for a more level playing field for the candidates invited to these events.  

Otherwise, we may be missing key ideas if we continue to ignore these candidates receiving less time to speak about their platforms.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Kent Stater editorial board, whose names are listed above.