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Keller @ Large: Presidential Race May Come Down To October Debates

BOSTON (CBS) - There's a long way to go in both the Democratic and Republican presidential races.

But if you believe that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will be their parties' nominees, as Northeastern University Professor of Journalism Dan Kennedy does, it's none too soon to be thinking about what role the media will play in that epic showdown.

"The media," writes Kennedy, "which has done so much to enable Trump's rise…must hold him accountable for his ugly anti-American rhetoric, a business record rooted in 'good old-fashioned bullying,' and his utter lack of relevant experience to be president."

I agree with that, and would hope for similarly tough scrutiny of the Democratic nominee's claims about her or his rhetoric, record and character.

The problem is, that's already been happening.

You could fill a good-sized shelf with the books that have been written questioning both Clinton's and Trump's behavior over the years. There's been plenty of coverage of her e-mail follies and his sketchy corporate dealings.

And an abundance of fact-checking of their public statements is just the click of a mouse or TV remote away.

The bigger question is, do enough people care?

We are reaping the disturbing harvest of many years of information overload and compartmentalization.

There is too much coverage for a busy person to ever absorb, and the information that does break through tends more and more to be filtered through like-minded social media friends or slanted media outlets that confirm an existing bias.

In our divided country, it all may come down to the TV debates in October, and the gut feelings conveyed therein.

Kind of scary, isn't it?

Listen to Jon's commentary:

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