Tonight the first on-air presidential debate between aspirant Mitt Romney and current President Barack Obama will begin at 9 PM, broadcast on just about all the network news stations, moderated before by play-it-safe Jim Lehrer, and we are all prepared to
watch a deep discussion learn something new enjoy a ritualized Kabuki dance.
Let’s be honest — the differences between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are pretty clear to those who’ve been paying attention (Cayman Islands bank accounts, size of Medicare cuts, distribution of tax cuts), and so are the similarities (promotion of war as an ongoing foreign policy tool, slashed civil liberties, protection for corporate interests). Mitt Romney has managed to campaign for months without specific policy proposals, so that chances of him getting specific tonight in Denver are essentially nil. Barack Obama has managed to alienate his left and campaign on the strength of not saying out loud that 47% of the American people are leeches. Given the state of his opponent, that’s a pretty considerable strength, so why mess with a lead by saying anything new? We can be sure neither will discuss any of the other presidential candidates on the ticket in a number of states, like Jill Stein and Gary Johnson.
What we’re left with in this first debate is an entertaining one-ring circus. Who knows — maybe Mitt Romney will insult another 20% of the populace, or come out with another new shade of makeup. Maybe Barack Obama will admit he was born in Uzbekistan or sigh to the tune of “Phantom of the Opera.” It could happen.
If we must watch (and you know how hard it is not to watch), let’s at least have some fun. Below are three printable Romney-Obama Debate Bingo cards filled with words and phrases with a varying likelihood of being propelled out of a candidate’s mouth tonight. You know the rules: five across, five down or five diagonally in a row and you win. Win what? If you’re the betting type, go Roman and add some bread to the circus. If you’d like to be comfortably numb, turn it into a drinking game, with a swig every time you hear a phrase or subject uttered on your card.
And why let Irregular Times have all the fun drawing these babies up? Print this blank card and make your own bingo debate card with your own predictions: