The debates to date have had an enormous impact on the race, almost certainly scuttling Perry’s campaign while boosting Herman Cain’s until the point where the MSM knives came out and began the bleeding process which continues and will not stop. The two “serious” candidates other than Romney and Perry –the Governors Pawlenty and Huntsman—were diminished by formats that never allowed them to explain exactly what it is that governors actually do and learn. Rick Santorum and Michelle Bachmann were branded as irrelevant by the debates as surely as if they had been off stage, and Ron Paul got his eight additional 15 minutes of fame to be followed by another dozen or quarter hours to come, repeatedly sending the message that the GOP cannot manage even its own nomination process.
The world economy is watching with a great deal of alarm as Europe struggles to a resolution of its many crises. Iran is revealed to have the ambitions for nukes all the serious people have known about but the MSM either scoffed at or doesn’t understand, and the EPA is poised to issue rule after rule that are killing thousands of jobs but it is too complicated for the designated questioner to grapple with. And Obamacare continues its deadly roll-out, suffocating jobs, driving up premiums and crushing employment, but the media wizards don't know how to or don't care to try to open the floor to a sustained, detailed conversation on what to do next, after the repeal which must come.
What a farce.
Romney has stayed above it, refused every attempted media provocation, and repeatedly tried to get the panels and thus the audience to focus on the economy.
Gingrich has earned wide admiration for his scorn of the media, and he should continue to wear that disdain as a badge of honor.
And the GOP State Parties that are participants in this traveling circus need to start dictating some minimum terms to get more for their voters out of this than backstage passes, Green Room goodies and a picture with Anderson Cooper.