Businessman Herman Cain and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich agreed to participate in a Lincoln-Douglas style debate which will air live tonight on C-SPAN. The debate is being broadcast as part of a Texas Tea Party Patriots PAC fundraiser.

Air Time: Saturday, November 5 at 8pm ET / 5pm PT on C-SPAN

Live Stream: C-SPAN (Starting 8pm ET / 5pm PT)

Report from C-SPAN:

GOP presidential candidates Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich engage in a 90 minute debate hosted by the Texas Tea Party PAC. There is no moderator and the two candidates discuss and respond to each other’s positions on domestic policy in The Woodlands, TX.

The debate is divided into three parts, with each part focusing on one entitlement program – Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

In previous media-moderated debates, Gingrich said repeatedly that should he be the GOP nominee, he would challenge President Obama to Lincoln-Douglas style debates.

Cain has risen in the polls recently with his 9-9-9 tax plan, but the media has focused this week on two previous settlements with women alleging he sexual harassed them while he lead the National Restaurant Association.

The Lincoln-Douglas debates were a series of three-hour debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas during the 1858 Illinois Senate race. In the format, one candidate would start with a 60 minute statement, and his opponent would get 90 minutes to respond. The first speaker then got a 30 minute rebuttal. The two candidates took turns speaking first.

Looking forward to watching this broadcast since it will let Cain and Gingrich go much more in depth on each topic.


  1. This may very well be a historically important debate. There is one problem, however.

    The LSU-Alabama football game is scheduled for the same time. It too may very well be a historically important football game.

    Will you be ably to schedule a replay of the debate on CNN soon? There will be very few people watching the debate in Louisiana and Alabama… this game is going to determine who plays for the NCAA National College Championship.

    Please consider replaying what promises to be an important debate, even more of which I imagine will take place in the near future.

  2. Options are – watch the game/tape the debate or watch the debate/tape game. Your choice.

    Frankly, this debate will more than likely give voters a real good look at two people running for office discussing domestic policy – entitlements, taxes maybe. No social issues, no foreign policy issues, no mud slinging – just issues that we citizens need to hear.

    I will be watching the debate.

  3. @Bob Patterson
    This is a political website. Not a sports one.
    Anyone unable to watch it on their TV can watch it online (LIVE or recorded) on

    Why are they focusing on the entitlement programs? I don’t want to watch Gingrich annihilate Cain simply because Cain doesn’t know the first thing about SS/Medicare/Medicaid.

    Then again, what does Cain know about other than selling third-rate pizza?

  4. I truly believe the reason our politicians are so far out of control, is due to the fact that many americans dont take the time to understand, or realize what is
    happening in our country. Love them or hate them, we the people have given our politicians all of the power.
    Instead of bashing the people that are running, I feel we should pay attention to their message, and make an informed decision, to elect our leaders.

  5. Just for the record – Cain is a Fed person and we certainly don’t need him. Gingrich is part of the establishment and will not make the changes that need to be made. Only Ron Paul will actually do what he says and address the issues in the manor that more and more of our American citizens have sympathy with. I don’t have time for either of these two candidates.

  6. This is surely a pitiful debate,they don’t seem to be saying anything new.
    the good old Georgia boys. looks like they both have a shady past.

  7. Congratulations on an outstanding debate tonight! You have raised the bar for the way election contests should be held — ideas, issues, and mutual respect on the part of the candidates. This is the kind of election debate that America should be showing to the rest of the world.

  8. I applaud C-Span for broadcasting this debate. Finally a real debate! We do not need a showbiz extravaganza produced and directed by the media. Just the facts.

  9. Wonderfully enjoyable debate. I really feel better informed about entitlement programs and alternatives to these programs. These two gentlemen had a real discussion without hype, mud slinging, name calling, or other distractions from the facts. If you missed it, you must go to C-SPAN’s website and watch it.AND, I like the idea of Gingrich/Cain for President 2012.

  10. “I really feel better informed about entitlement programs and alternatives to these programs”

    “Entitlement” is the wrong word to use when describing the payment of money paid by beneficiaries. Social Security is NOT AN ENTITLEMENT PROGRAM, EVERYONE WHO GETS MONEY GETS THAT MONEY BECAUSE IT IS THEIR MONEY THEY PAID INTO IT. It is unbelievable how many idiots repeat a mantra completely made up by Fox News to garner support for the rich at the expense of the poor. Spending will not decrease it they cut social security benefits, Republicans will simply give that extra money to their buddies in form of tax breaks, grants, loans and business deals.

    direct link to the debate on C-span. Seems to have buffer issues, but it’s there.

    Loved the format. Wish all debates could be more like this. No attacks, no BS and little/no media involvement trying to ask targeted questions designed to draw an argument. What’s disappointing is we only saw two candidates and well, they’re both saying much of the same thing on these issues.

  12. Nov. 5, 2011 Debate

    I watched a debate tonight that was the most informative, intelligent 1 1/2 hrs. and I couldn’t have enjoyed it more, as I learned so much. The candidates presented an excellent presence, although I thought Newt had the edge and appeared more forthcoming with ideas and solutions,and was able to answer the most difficult ques. so prepared and at ease definitely A+. I thought Herman Cain did very well, just wasn’t as seasoned as Newt, but also presented excellent qualities, but again Newt had the edge. They would make a marvelous “dream team”,with Newt at the top! A combination of both could without a second thought bring our country back to the America we once had and loved!

  13. block grants to the states,loser pays law,voter ID,innovation by the states.Many of these ideas Rick Perry has already placed in Texas.No originality whatsoever.

  14. THANK YOU!, Texas Patriots PAC….A real debate. Finally, real issues and real answers. This is what we need – candidates having a chance to really outline their ideas and not riddled with sound bite rhetoric and gotcha moments from the moderators. As a seventy year old retiree, I have no patience for the news media and want to get to the heart of the matters that have almost brought this great Country to its knees. A Gingrich/Cain ticket would be something that I could get behind. This Country is in extreme straits and we need extreme, solid, well thought out ideas to turn it around. A good “house cleaning” and simple, straitforward plans are sorely needed. Gingrich and Cain rocked!

  15. @Dave Mowers…..NEWS ALERT! Fox News didn’t “make up” the mantra ‘Entitlement Program’ when referring to Social Security. Your President did.

  16. I thank your organization for holding this debate and I thank C-Span for covering it.

    The fact that none of the networks, nor PBS/NPR, jumped at the chance to promote and cover the debate tells you all you need to know about the media.

    The mainstream “news” media – along with mainstream “entertainment” media – surely is the opiate of the people.

    No… the heads of the networks and their news divisions don’t hold weekly meetings attended by business, entertainment, and political movers and shakers from across the partisan spectrum in order to “conspire” to keep the American People largely ignorant.

    They don’t have to!

    The ignorance is “organically” fostered by a television news media nearly universally fixated upon the soundbite “gotchya” entertainment and the “horse race” aspects of politics rather than focused upon providing the American People the background and factual context required in order to separate truth from fiction in politics.

    I was out last night. My wife and I watched the debate via C-Span’s video archive this morning. While I didn’t “learn” anything I didn’t already know in terms of facts, figures, and historical context, I’m not the average American.

    The average American knows little of what the two candidates and Congressman King presented as factual background. Why? Good question…

    The answer: as with the media, American education deliberately fails to impart knowledge of how government works in the real world.

    Point blank: most of our society’s mainstream elites don’t WANT the American People to be educated… to possess the knowledge to question the “party line” – the “party line” of EITHER party.

    Certainly the heads of CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, and yes, Fox, don’t want the American People to question the general thrust of their news presentations or the worldviews propagated via endless repetition and deliberate skewing.

    Partisanship is besides the point in relation to what I’m getting at here. For example… my Republican Congresswoman who sends out email after email from both her congressional site and her campaign site didn’t send out an email to her Republican constituents reminding us of the debate and urging us to watch it either live or taped.

    Nothing from the RNC. Nothing from the other official Republican political organs. No… not even a “reminder” from Tom DeLay’s Senate Conservatives Fund – “our” (tiny) wing of the GOP.

    Again, folks… the shear number of “movers and shakers” who either proactively want the American People to remain ignorant or who can’t be bothered to support a vehicle for knowledge such as the one represented by this debate… that’s what should scare the bejeezus out of each and every one of us.

  17. Oh… and btw:

    The Social Security Trust Fund is not filled with “money.”

    The “money” collected – the excess Social Security “contributions” collected prior to the system turning topsy-turvey last year – is gone… spent.

    Yes… it was “lent” to the Treasury.

    It was “lent” to a Treasury which has borrow 43-cents out of every dollar spent just on general operating expenses alone.

    As an accounting gimmick “Special” Social Security Trust Fund bonds – IOUs – were then issued so as to “mark” the “loan.”

    But, folks… these IOUs are not “money.” As an accounting gimmick they’re counted as “assets,” but as IOUs rather than “money” they’re actually LIABILITIES…!!!

    Folks… I’m sure most of YOU know this… but out of a population of 307,000,000-plus what percentage of your countrymen do you suppose are aware of this?

    (Oh… and as I mentioned up above in my initial comment… this reality isn’t taught in school. It’s deliberately not taught in school. Indeed… listening to Speaker Gingrich you’d think HE wasn’t aware of this reality!)

    We need to demand our politicians, our media, and our educrats first acknowledge and then share reality with the American People.

    Last night’s debate was a great start. And yes, Congressman King actually did (gently) prod Newt in an attempt to elicit a bit more “detail” from him concerning his… er… “presentation” of the facts regarding the “Trust Fund”… but frankly – for the next debate perhaps – debate organizers must bring some experts into the mix who would FORCE the candidates to either acknowledge (or explicitly deny) the truth of such “reality” as their being no actual “assets” in the Social Security Trust Fund.

    (Yes… I suppose in theory the U.S. government could put these “Special Security Trust Fund bonds on the open market and perhaps find buyers… HOWEVER… the buyers would then need to be PAID OFF in terms of interest and principal down the road! So any way you look at it… even kicking the can down the road via expanding the Ponzi scheme beyond strictly “U.S.-U.S.” accounting gimmickry… we’re still talking LIABILITIES… not assets.)

  18. We had company last night to watch two football games so missed watching the debate but watched it online today-all I can say is “WOW”, this is what we have been wanting, a serious discussion about the issues. I have been growing more and more interested in Newt Gingrich after watching the way he has presented himself in the previous debates (or rather what has up to now been pushed off on us as debates) and he did not disappoint. How absolutely refreshing and informing.

  19. Gentlement: I missed this Cain/Gingrich Lincoln Douglas style debate and would like to see it. Will it be rebroadcast?

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