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"[T]he moderator will not ask follow-up questions or comment on either the questions asked by the audience or the answers of the candidates during the debate..."
However, Crowley – who was not involved in this rule-making – does not plan on adhering to this rule, and that's a good thing, for of the two candidates, which one is prone to falsehoods that may need to be followed up upon for clarification?
Here is Crowley explaining that she does not plan on being a glorified microphone-holder at tonight's town hall debate, which will be critical in helping Obama to counter Romney's falsehoods:
"They will call on 'Alice,' and 'Alice' will stand up and ask a question. Both candidates will answer. Then there's time for a follow-up question, facilitating a discussion, whatever you want to call it," Crowley said. "So if Alice asks oranges, and someone answers apples, there's the time to go, 'But Alice asked oranges? What's the answer to that?" Or, 'Well, you say this, but what about that?'"
Of course, asking follow-up questions, both as a journalist and as a moderator of a town hall debate, would be in keeping with how past debates have occurred.
However, at this debate, Crowley is expected – actually, required – to do nothing more than keep time, keep track of the microphone and solicit questions from the audience.
Which would force President Obama, of course, to have to try and counter Romney's incessant lying, his use of the Gish Gallop to overwhelm Obama with the sheer magnitude of his falsehoods.
Fortunately, Crowley will likely take a bit of the stride out of Romney's gallop tonight. And that's good not just for Obama, but for everyone involved.
Of course, both campaigns signed off on the memorandum embedded below. And Crowley's follow-up questions will be tough for Obama as well. However, no balance, her refusal to not adhere to the limitation placed upon her is a very positive development.