Jim Lehrer Reacts To Tough Reviews As Moderator

By: , NewsOXY Reporter
10/05/2021 09:28 AM ET


Jim Lehrer, the semi-retired PBS “NewsHour” anchorman, reacts to tough reviews as moderator for the first 2012 Presidential Debate in Denver.

Jim Lehrer was moderator for the first 2012 Presidential Debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney.

Jim Lehrer is now having to defend himself after tough criticism about his performance as moderator for the first 2012 Presidential Debate. Most of the criticism has been over the fact that he seemed to be overwhelmed and unable to control either President Barrack Obama or Republican candidate Mitt Romney when it came to the time allowed to speak and staying on subject.

Frequently, the moderator attempted to cut off either candidate, particularly an aggressive Romney, after the dialogue many times went much longer then the 2 minute time limit. However, frequently the candidates ignored and just talked over his attempts to stop them, and continued on for several more minutes, which led to not leaving anytime to discuss other subjects that where supposed to be debated about.

At one point when Lehrer tried to change the subject at the end of segment, Romney told him he gets the last word on the previous one since Obama got to begin it and went on to make a counter point to Obama for several more minutes.

On another occasion Lehrer had tried to cut off Barrack Obama by saying his 2 minutes were up, when an agitated president fired back “No. I had 5 seconds left before you interrupted me,” then went on to talk for about another 2 minutes.

Lehrer has actually had experience as a moderator in Presidential debates, moderating in 11 of them previously.

He has since fired back at his critics by saying, “I thought the format accomplished its purpose, which was to facilitate direct, extended exchanges between the candidates about issues of substance. Part of my moderator mission was to stay out of the way of the flow and I had no problems with doing so. My only real personal frustration was discovering that ninety minutes was not enough time in that more open format to cover every issue that deserved attention.”

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