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Harris Interactive to Provide Online Forum in Support of the Commission on Presidential Debates

Harris Interactive has developed two online surveys that will offer voters their first opportunity to provide input on the topics to be discussed in the 2000 presidential debates. The surveys will be a key feature of the Commission on Presidential Debates' (CPD) Internet initiative to engage American voters in the electoral process. The CPD enlisted Rochester, NY-based Harris Interactive to develop the methodology and technology used to tabulate and analyze survey results.

Harris Interactive has formulated a "Pre-Debate Survey" posted on the CPD Web site ( which allows voters to propose topics they would like to see discussed during the three presidential and one vice-presidential debate this October.

The "Post-Debate Survey" will give citizens the opportunity to evaluate the impact of the debates, describe how it shaped their opinions of the candidates and the issues, and to voice ideas for upcoming debates. The survey will be posted immediately following each debate.

The CPD initiative will continue throughout the course of the campaign focused particularly on the four scheduled debates. The surveys will provide the millions who watch the debates (which over the last two elections ranged from about 30 to 90 million Americans) an opportunity to register their reactions both before and after viewing. Harris Interactive designed the Internet survey utilizing resources donated by a high-powered technology consortium, including 3COM, Sun Microsystems, Alteon WebSystems and Zone of Trust. This system will have the capacity to process more than two million surveys per hour.

Our goal is to encourage the most participatory election in history.

Read the complete news release. FAQs

What is is the official Web site of the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD), the organization that produced and sponsors the debates. The site is central to the CPD's voter education efforts.

What's on

Pre-Debate Survey: Allows citizens to suggest topics for the presidential and vice presidential debates.

Post-Debate Surveys: Will enable citizens to assess the value of each debate immediately afterward.

Online Forums: Will bring citizens together to discuss hot election issues with celebrity moderators.

DebateChats: Will bring citizens together after each debate to discuss it in real-time.

Education Resources: Includes curricula for teachers, links to debate history, and a guide to hosting political debates.


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