Let the Debates Begin
Now to the debates, when the candidates for president and vice president come face-to-face
And with these words - "I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent's youth and inexperience" - Reagan turned concern that he'd gotten old and dotty on its head. Challenger Walter Mondale said later, "When I heard that, I knew I had lost."
For all the prep, sometimes it's the little things that voters remember. When George H.W. Bush kept looking at his watch in 1992, it was clear he wanted to be somewhere else.
When asked what he would consider a successful debate, Lehrer replied, "That the things that mattered - not necessarily the things that are in the headlines the last 24 hours before the debate, [and] to hell with the candidates and to hell with the moderators and to hell with the handlers and to hell with the pundits - but the things that the voters care the most about have been discussed, and have been discussed in a way that they can now understand what the differences are. That's what these debates are really all about."
The first presidential debate will be aired on KTVA CBS 11 at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, October 3.