When I watched the televised mayoral debate four years ago, I couldn’t help but notice how more polished in front of the camera Mayor Marty Chavez was than his opponents at the time. Back then, he knew that the audience that counted was made up of those watching the debate on small screens from the comfort of their homes. In other words, he talked to the camera; whereas, his opponents were talking to the moderators.
Surprisingly, this was not the case in last night’s debate.
Both Richard Romero and RJ Berry gave more polished and comfortable performances last night than the incumbent mayor. And, let’s face it, that’s what we’re talking about in televised debates – performances. Whereas Mayor Chavez spent most of the night avoiding looking directly at the camera and struggling to defend his record, Richard Romero and RJ Berry looked comfortable, prepared and forward looking.
Watch the video, and you’ll see what I mean. The incumbent mayor spends way more time than his opponents speaking to the moderators. At times, he also seems to be thinly veiling his anger at being held accountable for his fiscally unsound management of the city over all of these years.
Bottom line, last night’s debate didn’t nothing to help the Mayor’s campaign. For those of us who have had enough of politics as usual, it showed that there are more qualified candidates for the leadership position.