The tailored nature of the probing was probably necessitated by the big number of participants. But it helped that Fox bypassed the counterproductive notion of “fairness” that normally dictates all candidates must answer the same exact questions within the same allotted time— as if they were participating in an Oxford debate rather than a larger-than-usual panel discussion on cable television. With this, the Fox moderators helped dial down the platitude quotient somewhat (though, naturally, it was still high) and candidates struggled to slip into their tedious resume recitations.
Even the raise-your-hand survey, typically the lowest form of gotcha journalism, transformed into an amusing argument over Donald Trump’s threat of a third-party candidacy.
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