GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - Whatever you think of Virg Bernero and Rick Snyder on the same stage Monday night near Detroit, it was not a debate.
And don't expect a real debate anytime soon.
Bernero, the Democratic nominee for governor, showed up at Republican Snyder's town hall meeting to press his desire for a series of debates before the November election.
Snyder invited Bernero up on stage , and they peacefully co-existed. But this will not be a regular event, and there's further evidence there won't be any debates during this cycle.
A statement on Snyder's website said he "was first to suggest three televised debates between the candidates on Aug. 4 and since then he has negotiated in good faith with the Bernero campaign to get a final agreement on the meetings. Those negotiations ended on Friday after the Bernero campaign rejected Snyders final fair offer to hold three televised debates. Snyder said he would continue to talk directly to voters through his town hall meetings."
Bernero said he accepted with only minor changes.
Do debates matter?
The era of modern political debates began in 1960 with the Nixon-Kennedy match up. Though romanticized as the turning point of the election, it more likely showed the candidates thinking on their feet to millions of viewers, expressing previously stated points of view.
In a 1976 debate with Jimmy Carter, President Ford misspoke that eastern Europe was not under Communist domination. Again, it was not the key to Carter's razor-thin win, but it was part of the dialogue.
In 2002 and 2006, 24 Hour News 8 hosted debates with Michigan's gubernatorial candidates. Neither sealed the election, but each provided voters a better idea where each candidate wanted to take the state.
And in June, 24 Hour News 8 hosted debates in the primary for the governor's race . All the candidates from each party participated, except for one.
Rick Snyder did not participate in the debates.
On Saturday, the Michigan State Spartans will be taking on the Ohio State Buckeyes for the Big Ten College Football title. On Friday, fans began gathering in Indianapolis for the big game.
Two Kalamazoo men are in jail after Kalamazoo officers found them with money stolen from Sunny Mart Friday afternoon.
Two people were taken to the hospital after one vehicle crossed the center line, causing a head-on crash in Ada Township Friday night.