Both Gov. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) and Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) are two experienced politicians heading to the debate table on Oct. 4, during the only vice presidential debate during the 2016 general election season.

But compared to the first face-off between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the event probably won’t have nearly the same drama – or the same potential for massive consequences in the polls, a political scientist said.

Daniel P. Franklin is an associate professor of political science at Georgia State University, and is an expert on executive power, political culture, presidential legacies, and the relationships between the presidency and Congress.

“Because both VP candidates, as far as qualifications are concerned, ‘clear the bar,’ I don't expect the VP debate to generate much heat,” Franklin said. “Furthermore, they both have a long history of public service, so I don't expect either candidate to commit a major gaffe, one that will ‘move the needle’ in the polls.”

He is the author of Pitiful Giants: Presidents in their Final Term (Palgrave MacMillian, 2014). It explores the approaches U.S. presidents elected to a second term after World War II have taken to executive actions, including Eisenhower, Reagan, Clinton, George W. Bush and Obama, during their final years in power.

This summer, Rowman & Littlefield published a revised edition of his 2006 book, Politics and Film: Political Culture and Film in the United States. It explores popular movies and TV shows as indicators of social and political trends to explore the political culture of the U.S., including American Sniper, House of Cards, Orange Is the New Black, and Twelve Years a Slave.

For more about Franklin, including his CV and a list of publications, visit

For further assistance and additional experts in political science, rhetoric and public policy this election season, contact Jeremy Craig, public relations coordinator at Georgia State University, at [email protected] or 404-413-1374.