SIR – I wonder why I, along with countless other Americans, bother to follow the Republican race at all, as none of the candidates is providing a compelling vision to challenge Mr Obama in next year’s election. One reason for remaining interested could be that the dramas which unfold each week are yet another type of sensationalist reality television. Perhaps politics could learn something from that format, by kicking candidates off the island, making them leave the house, or allowing a sharp-tongued Simon Cowell to berate their performance and decide upon their legitimacy.

A weekly voting system to get the clowns off the stage does not at this point seem such a terrible idea, especially since the prize is the nomination for a run at the chance to be ruler of the free world.

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25 November 2011