Rubin: How to spice up the Democratic debate

Jennifer Rubin

As with the Republicans’, the Democratic debates have become rather predictable and therefore un-revealing. The moderators ask variations of the same questions; the candidates give variations of the same answers. That does not mean there is a lack of material. There is plenty to ask at this week’s debate.

From Hillary Clinton, we would like to know:

– Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, says going into Libya was a mistake. Why is he wrong?

– What, if anything, in retrospect would you have done differently with regard to the Egyptian uprising against Hosni Mubarak?

– Should we cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority if it continues to incite violence and refuses to come to the negotiating table?

– You’ve said you would go beyond President Obama’s executive orders on immigration. However, a federal court has blocked his actions. Why would your executive orders succeed?

– Would you put any Republicans in your Cabinet? If so, who?

– Hasn’t the recent cease-fire in Syria given Bashar al-Assad a new lease on life? Isn’t this a big win for Russia and Iran as well?

– What would you do on taxes, healthcare and the rest of your domestic agenda if the Republicans have House and/or Senate majorities?

– The teachers unions have opposed a number of school reforms including charter schools, which you previously supported. Are you willing to stand up to them when they oppose reform measures that have proven successful? On what issues?

– Would you have made the grand bargain budget deal with then-House Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio? Would you go back to the Simpson-Bowles deficit-reduction plan? If not, how would you address the debt?

– The economy is growing at a little more than 2 percent a year. Is that good enough? If not, how would you promote economic growth?

– Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is called a “maverick” for opposing his party on some issues. Are you a maverick? On what issues do you depart from the conventional liberal position?

Then there is Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). We would like to know:

– You do not have a specific plan for breaking up the banks. Why not?

– Do you really have no position on whether Israel should go back to the so-called pre-1967 borders?

– What responsibility does Hamas have for conditions in Gaza?

– You accused Israel of indiscriminate bombing in the Gaza war. Are you saying Israel committed war crimes?

– Why would you be any better on opposing trade deals than Donald Trump?

– Each of President Obama’s secretaries of defense have argued we are spending too little on national security. Are they wrong? On what basis do you think so?

– There is no scientific evidence the Keystone XL Pipeline is an environmental threat. Are you denying science on this issue?

– Is global warming our biggest threat? Greater than terrorism?

– Do we need to lower the corporate tax rate? If not, aren’t we losing jobs to other countries where businesses choose to locate?

– What would you do if Russia invaded one of the Baltic states?

– Other than corporate “welfare” and defense, are you willing to cut any government spending? Aren’t subsidies for green energy corporate welfare?

– Is Medicaid a well-run, effective program, or does it need to be reformed? How?

Jennifer Rubin writes the Right Turn blog for The Post, offering reported opinion from a conservative perspective.

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