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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

10 Questions Neon Tommy Would Like To See The GOP Candidates Asked

Hannah Madans |
February 20, 2012 | 4:22 p.m. PST

Associate News Editor

Snapshot of GOP SC debate
Snapshot of GOP SC debate
The next GOP presidential debate will be held Wednesday by CNN in Arizona. Arizona and Michigan will both hold their primaries Feb. 28.  It will also be the last debate before super Tuesday, a date when 10 states hold contests.

There have already been numerous Republican debates, but here are some questions Neon Tommy would like to see answered:

1. What will you do about Social Security?

One of the Republican Party’s criticisms with President Barack Obama’s recent budget proposal was that it avoided difficult decision like what to do with Social Security.  What, then, would Republican leaders suggest doing?

2. What are your thoughts on the Pill for people who use it for purposes other than birth control?

Many women go on the Pill for reasons other than contraception. MSNBC says that one in three teenagers go on the Pill for non-contraceptive reasons. Many of these girls go on the Pill for menstrual relief, to regulate their period and for clearer skin. Do you also oppose the use of the Pill for these reasons? How would you address a girl who had such bad menstrual pain that she was unable to go to school until the Pill gave her relief? Would you make the Pill available to anyone?

3. All the candidates have come out against Obama’s healthcare reform. Would you attempt to make changes to his plan or get rid of it altogether?

This question would be particularly important for Mitt Romney to answer, as many have accused his health care plan for Massachusetts to be very similar to Obama’s.

4. How would you deal with countries like Bahrain that is an ally to the U.S. but represses its people?

Bahrain is host to the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet. Due to its proximity to Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan it played a large role in the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. Bahrain has also been the headquarters of U.S. naval activity in the Gulf since 1948. 

The government has been cracking down with violence against demonstrators, however, and opposition against Bahrain by its citizens is growing. How would you balance U.S. interests in the area and helping the citizens of the county? Does the U.S. have the obligation to help the protestors?

5. How would you deal with Iran’s nuclear weapons?

The potential of nuclear weapons in Iran has always been a threat to the United States. Now that the country has allegedly been experimenting with weapons, what would you do? The International Atomic Energy Agency has visited the country numerous times, without having any real impact. Should the U.S. or the U.N. take action? Will military intervention be necessary or will another type of action be taken? And what will the U.S. do to protect Israel, a country we are very closely aligned with, and one that Iran has expressed dislike for and is well within shooting range should Iran become capable of launching nuclear weapons?

6. Russia and China have been vetoing U.N. involvement in Syria. How would you deal with this?

The U.N. Security Council has been unable to condemn and take action against Bashar al-Assad’s brutal crackdowns in Syria against protectors. Russia and China have vetoed resolutions proposing U.N. involvement in the area. How would you aide Syria without upsetting other major world powers?

7. How would you prevent another crash, like the one in 2008, from occurring?

It would be interesting to hear how Newt Gingrich, who worked for Freddie Mac, a company some blame for the housing bubble, would prevent a similar crisis from occurring again. The economy is still undoubtedly one of the biggest issues in the election.

Even though it is easy to blame others for the crash, it will not change what happened. Instead, voters should hear what the candidates will do to prevent a similar situation from occurring again. What regulations would each candidate put in place? If they see signs of another financial crisis looming, what will they do?

8. How would you address the rising cost of higher education?

The cost of college has continued to rise. How would you make college more affordable? Is the answer making it easier to pay off student loans? How would you help those from lower-income areas afford an education?

9. What is your plan to balance the deficit?

As part of Obama’s recent budget proposal, he said he planned to eliminate tax breaks for the rich, which would help decrease the deficit. Republicans are not in favor of this plan. What, then, would you do to raise money? Would you raise taxes somewhere else? Would you decrease government spending? If so, what programs would you have to cut?

10. Why do you think you are the candidate who will be able to beat Obama in November’s general election?

Something on all Republican voters’ minds is who has the best chance of defeating Obama. Many have said Romney, even though he has failed to gain widespread Republican support. It would be good to hear why each candidate thinks he would have the best chance of becoming the next President of the United States.

Reach Associate News Editor Hannah Madans here.



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