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OTTAWA - The next federal election debates should have a simpler format and better moderation to focus more on what leaders say than what they are asked, says the commission that oversees the events.
"There is widespread agreement that the 2021 debates did not deliver as well as they should have on informing voters about parties' policies," said the final report of the Leaders' Debates Commission on the 2021 nationally televised events.
Many people look to leaders' debates during an election for the elusive "knockout punch" moment, in which a politician gets such a good hit on an opponent that their campaign efforts nosedive.
But in 2021 it was a throw from a moderator that left the biggest impression. Shachi Kurl, the president of the Angus Reid Institute, asked Bloc Québécois leader Yves-François Blanchet why he defended "discriminatory" provincial laws about religious symbols and the French language, which she said marginalized minorities and anglophones.
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