The debate’s unanswered questions

If they scored that vice presidential debate the other night based on the number of specific questions that never got specific answers, the outcome would have been a dead heat.

Both Vice President Mike Pence and challenger U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris had their Fred Astaire dancing shoes on as they waltzed around the direct questions from moderator Susan Page.

An unofficial count had Mr. Pence playing dodge ball on six occasions and Ms. Harris was close behind at five.

So viewers must have been asking, “Why won’t they answer the darn questions?”

The simple answer is they didn’t want to, because there was political fallout if they responded with an honest answer and, so, not wanting to tell a fib, the both of them just punted.

One of the most important inquiries centered on the elephant on the debate stage — namely the age of the two guys who weren’t there. Mike Pence is running with a partner who will be 74 if reelected, and Kamala Harris is hitched to a man who will be 78 if he gets to put his hand on the Bible in January,

Given that stark reality, it’s not far-fetched to speculate that one of the two VP candidates could be president before the next four-year term is completed.

So, Ms. Page wanted to know, on behalf of the citizenry, which was wondering the same thing, had either of the candidates talked to their running mates about the succession thing?

Instead of an answer, both of the candidates fired up the fog machine, leaving the moderator and the audience empty-handed.

But, wait, there’s more.

The Donald Trump administration, on a mission to deep-six the Affordable Care Act, has said it would have a replacement plan, which it has never produced and it has been steadfast in promising a worried patient population that it would not eliminate insurance coverage for those with pre-existing conditions.

The moderator asked for specifics on how that provision would be preserved.

Mr. Pence said it would be, but he never fleshed out how.

Why no answer?

Maybe the pledge is worthless, and they know it. But to confess to the electorate would certainly cost them a ton of senior citizen votes, which the Trump campaign is hemorrhaging already and can hardly afford to lose more.

Ms. Harris was as equally evasive on whether her party wants to stack the U.S. Supreme Court. She’s got company. Joe Biden wouldn’t answer that question, and neither did she, because the political explosion it would cause is too risky.

You see, the D’s are divided, which is why they are Democrats. Some want to stack, others do not, and Mr. Biden finally explained that taking a stance would become the story of the week and would divert attention from the issues he wants to discuss that will help him win.

Opening up a gaping and party-splitting wound in his party on the eve of the election could cost him votes within his own ranks, which is what he and she should have told the audience during their respective debates.

But they didn’t, making them look like professional politicians who can’t tell the truth, which Mr. Pence was guilty of, too.


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