2016 Vice-Presidential Debate

Mia Galex, Staff Writer

On Oct. 4., the 2016 vice-presidential debate took place at Longwood University. Indiana governor Mike Pence took on Virginia governor Tim Kaine, while engaged viewers could not take their eyes off the screen as two somewhat unknown politicians took the stage.  According to a CNN poll, two- thirds of debate watchers claimed Pence had a better performance than Kaine, while only one-third of voters believe Kaine did better than Pence.

Vice Presidential nominees Tim Kaine (left) and Mike Pence (right) battle it out on the debate stage.
Vice-presidential nominees Tim Kaine (left) and Mike Pence (right) battle it out on the debate stage.

The majority of the debate was focused on the two presidential candidates: Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Pence and Kaine both defended their running mates instead of focusing on popular political issues. Based on Pence’s performance, 29% of viewers surveyed stated the debate made them more likely to vote Donald Trump for president. As for the democratic party, 53% of viewers said their vote was not swayed by Kaine’s performance. In comparison to the presidential debate on Sept. 26th, 18% of voters said they were most apt to vote for Trump compared to 36% for Clinton.

“I felt like I was not getting to know the candidates for vice president and their stances on political issues, but instead I was getting to know the presidential nominees through the vice presidents making the debate completely useless,” junior Leila Iskandarani said.

After the debate, both vice presidential candidates kept the same approval ratings from citizens even though 48% of voters agreed Kaine had a better understanding of issues. Overall, Kaine has lost supporters due to the public opinion that Pence was better prepared for the debate.

The vice-presidential debate was filled with disrespect from both candidates towards each other. Regardless of which candidate has won elections in the past, their opponents have always supported them. Sadly, we will not get to see that this year.”

— Junior, Hilda Delgado

For many Americans, the debate helped finalize their vote in the 2016 election. The next presidential debate takes place Oct. 9., when voters will see Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton discuss the repercussions of the vice-presidential debate.