GOP debaters face video questioners


Photo by AP Photo / Carlos Osorio

Mitt Romney, left, and Rudy Giuliani talk to each other after the GOP Presidential candidates debate in Dearborn, Mich. on Oct. 9, 2007 file photo. The candidates will face off again Wednesday. (AP Photo)

Questions submitted for Wednesday’s CNN-YouTube Republican debate raise issues that range from global warming — a question asked by a snowman — to gun violence to respect for gays.

Some of the GOP candidates were reluctant to attend the debate in St. Petersburg, Fla., because they worried the format wasn’t serious enough, but a full lineup is expected. A melting snowman frightened about global warming was among the questioners at the Democrats’ CNN-YouTube debate on June 3.

The snowman is back — ”Hello, Mitt Romney!” he trills in a 40-second video — along with thousands of other questioners hoping to make the cut for the actual debate. Romney had expressed doubts about answering a question from a snowman.

Among the questions submitted:

— Lynn Mulder, the father of a young Florida gay man who was slain, asks how candidates will ”help create a climate of understanding and respect” toward gay and transgendered people.

— Actor Kirk Douglas, his speech slurred by a stroke, asks how candidates will improve education to help U.S. children compete in math and science.

— Gustavo Bitdinger of Palo Alto, Calif., plays the piano and sings about his Republican blues, asking ”How do you know that you won’t lose?”

Of the more than 3,500 video submissions reviewed by CNN producers, only about 40 will be played at the debate, CNN said.

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