Who Is Moderator Martha Raddatz? Here's What To Know

Photo: J. Countess/Getty Images.
For the third debate of the electoral cycle, the moderators will finally have backup. On Sunday night, ABC’s Martha Raddatz will take the stage together with CNN’s Anderson Cooper to helm the presidential town hall debate.

Raddatz will be the only woman to moderate a presidential debate in the 2016 election cycle, less than a week after Elaine Quijano guided the veep debate. So what should we expect from her? Here are three things to know about her before Sunday.

She can give the candidates a run for their money on military and foreign policy issues.

Raddatz has a long history of immersion in military and foreign policy issues. She spent five years specializing in the military, covering the Pentagon for NPR from 1993 to 1998, and in 2007 published The Long Road Home: A Story of War and Family, an account of fighting in the beginning of the Iraq War. She’s also on the board of directors for the Bob Woodruff Foundation, an organization that supports veterans and their families.

She’s also served as a White House correspondent and covered the State Department with ABC News. In 2004, Raddatz became the network’s senior national security correspondent, and is currently in the role of chief global affairs correspondent, traveling around the world.

This isn’t her first rodeo.

Raddatz’s had experience moderating high-profile debates. In the 2012 election cycle, she took charge of the vice-presidential debate between Joe Biden and Paul Ryan. Though the debate is often remembered for Biden’s use of his favorite phrase, post-debate critiques lauded Raddatz’s performance. CNN called her the true winner of the debate, saying that she pressed the candidates for firm answers and praising her for skillfully steering the conversation.

She’s kind of a badass.

According to her biography on ABC News, Raddatz has traveled to Iraq 21 times, in order to cover the conflict there, and was on the last convoy out of the country. She’s also covered a combat mission over Afghanistan by flying along in an F15 fighter jet, and traveled on a USS destroyer through the entrance to the Persian Gulf. (No word on whether she was accompanied by an AC/DC soundtrack and wearing sunglasses for any of those events.)
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