Alex Massie

So, Mr (or Mrs) Candidate...

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Radley Balko has some questions he'd like to ask the Presidential candidates. I particularly liked:

Do you think an atheist could be president? Do you think an atheist should be? Assuming you generally agreed with an atheist on more issues than the alternative candidates in a given election, would you vote for one?

and

America by far and away has the highest prison population in the world. Does this concern you? Are there any federal crimes you feel should be repealed from the books, or devolved to the states?

and

Would you support a sunset provision requiring Congress to revisit and re-pass each law after five years?

Chances of these issues coming up in the next in the endless stream of candidate "debates"? Practically zero.

If the debates are boring - and they are - it's largely because the questions tend to allow the candidates to retreat to the safety or pre-prepared policy sound-bites or banal "I loves America" bromides. We almost never hear interesting questions that allow one to get a sense of how - or if - a candidate actually thinks. Radley's questions, though obviously informed by libertarianism, would be a good place to start changing that.

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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