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Questions and answers on presidential debates



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A. The Commission on Presidential Debates, established in 1987. The organization is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, tax-exempt corporation. It has sponsored debates since 1988. The co-chairs are Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr., a former Republican National Committee chairman, and Michael McCurry, a former White House press secretary for Bill Clinton.

Q. Is Crowley the first woman to moderate a presidential debate?

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A. No. Former ABC News anchor Carole Simpson did it in 1992. The candidates then were President George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Ross Perot.

Q. What is the record of diversity among moderators?

A. Presidential debate moderators Simpson and ex-CNN anchor Bernard Shaw are African-Americans. Another African-American, PBS’ Gwen Ifill, moderated two vice presidential debates. There has never been an Asian or Latino moderator. Shaw moderated a presidential debate in 1988 and a vice presidential debate in 2000, and Ifill moderated in 2004 and 2008.




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