Dan of the County: All of the local political "debates" I'm aware of usually consist of each person reciting a prepared opening and closing statement with a few limited questions in between (which in most cases have already been give to the "debaters" ahead of time). There are usually so many candidates at one time that due to time constraints, no one really gets to get much "meat" in the process. My suggestion to DFO still stands--live debates on HBO in real time with just a few candidates at a time and someone putting the questions and answers on the blog in response to "real" questions from the blog crowd. Now, that could be enlightening and scary as all get out.
DFO: Blogmeister KenP and I are going to talk about this tomorrow. I like the idea. Meanwhile, I've just signed up with Tony Stewart to be one of the four panelists to question congressional candidates Bill Sali and Larry Grant Sept. 15 at a North Idaho College televised debate. ME Mike Patrick will represent the Coeur d'Alene Press. Also, there will be panelists from the NIC Sentinel and the Coeur d'Alene Indian Tribe.
BTW, you can read DOTC's post from the state clerk's association re: vote-by-mail discussion here.