A list of the most famous presidential debate quotes ever recorded. The 2012 presidential campaign has been interesting, especially the quotes that have been repeated from the three televised debates. Do you remember these?
In 1980, Ronald Reagan said, “Ask yourself, ‘Are you better off than you were four years ago?’” The actor-turned-president appealed to voters with this simple question during his debate with incumbent President Jimmy Carter one week before the 1980 election.
“Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy, I knew Jack Kennedy, Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy,” Texas Sen. Bentsen uttered his now-famous quote to Dan Quayle during a famous 1988 vice-presidential debate.
“You ought to be ashamed of yourself for jumping on my wife. You’re not worth being on the same platform as my wife,” Bill Clinton said in 1992. Clinton was still governor of Arkansas when he came to the defense of his wife after Jerry Brown accused him of improprieties in a Democratic primary debate.
In 1992, Ross Perot said, “I don’t have any experience in running up a $4 trillion debt. I don’t have any experience in gridlock government, where nobody takes responsibility for anything and everybody blames everybody else.” The third-party Texas billionaire defended his lack of political experience in a presidential debate with George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.
“It was an unidentified flying object, OK? It’s, like, it’s unidentified. I saw something,” said Dennis Kucinich. The U.S. representative from Cleveland, Ohio, answered an unusual famous question in a 2007 primary debate about a story Shirley MacLaine recounted in her memoir.
“Lifting whole passages from someone else’s speeches is not change you can believe in, it’s change you can Xerox,” then Senator Clinton of New York said. The quote was delivered in her own zinger against Barack Obama in a one-on-one debate in February 2008.