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Debate moderator emerges as fan-favourite after B.C. leaders’ face-off

FILE - Shachi Kurl moderates the only televised leaders' debate during the 2020 election campaign.

Moderator Shachi Kurl is getting a lot of praise for her handling of the only televised B.C. leaders debate Tuesday

Kurl was able to keep leaders on track, with few interruptions and few instances of candidates speaking over one another

Many took to social media during and after the debate to share their praise for Kurl

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – While many people are describing Tuesday’s tame leaders’ debate as one without any fireworks or nastiness, the night’s moderator is being given a lot of credit for keeping things rolling.

The Angus Reid Institute’s Shachi Kurl was at the helm and began by setting expectations for the leaders.

“Answer the questions you’re asked. I don’t want to interrupt you, but I will if I have to,” she told the BC NDP’s John Horgan, Green Leader Sonia Furstenau, and Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson.

What followed was a debate that saw few interruptions, few instances of candidates speaking over one another, and an overall civil tone.

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Online, Kurl is being celebrated as the night’s true winner, managing to ask fair questions of all three leaders, all while maintaining order — a stark difference from moderating we’ve seen in past weeks just south of the border, where a presidential election campaign is underway.

Firm, but fair, Kurl was able to keep the leaders focused throughout the 90 minute head-to-head, offering the leaders a treat at the end for a job well done.

“Leaders, thank you. Thank you for a respectful debate, y’all get a cookie,” Kurl concluded. “Nice work.”

LIVE: B.C. leaders debate Oct. 13

Provincial leaders to debate what matters for British Columbians ahead of the upcoming election.https://www.citynews1130.com/topic/vote2020/

Posted by NEWS 1130 on Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Praise for her moderating has been widespread on social media.

“Congrats on a great job, cookies and all. If you DM me a mailing address, you may just find some cookies arriving to you via mail, from @girlguidesofcan’s new cookie website,” one person wrote Tuesday. “They won’t arrive in time for your post-debate snack tonight but you can enjoy them in the coming days.”

Kurl, herself, even took to Twitter to share her thanks for the reaction.

“Gosh. A little verklempt at all the love tonight. I hope to respond individually in the next hours but first it’s time for a cocktail … and a cookie,” her tweet reads.

“My main takeaway from tonights (sic) #bcelection2020 debate? I’m glad I live in BC and we can have a civil debate facilitated by an amazing moderator. Well done all candidates and especially well done @ShachiKurl,” another tweet reads.

The love fest is long winded, with much of the same reaction easily found on Twitter and elsewhere.