Here's the thing.
Mint Debian, IMO, should be just that. Debian with Mint on top.
Now, ironically, making it isn't going to be the hard part, given enough willing victims to dest.... I mean, enough *beta testers willing to find bugs....*.
It's the ongoing maintainance team that makes or breaks this project. Total honesty time here, now:
I could make the initial Debian Mint myself. No crap. I really could. I'm aware of Debian Gnome's problems, and I'm aware of the myriad solutions. I know how to set up repos. I know how to set up preferences files, etc... I know how to manipulate tags, how to pin, etc... I know how to put the Minty goodness into a plain-vanilla Testing GNOME once I have it fixed to my satisfaction, and I know how to make it appropriately Minty, *with ideas from the community* from there. I know how do all of the things to *make* Debian Mint, based on Debian Testing, using a combination of Debian and Mint Repos, and not having to rely on anyone else's work, happen. The process *should* be open, and it *should* involve several people at this point, but I *could* do it myself.
This, ironically, is *not* the hard part, as pain-in-the-ass as that would be
No, the hard part, and why it HAS to be at LEAST a 5 knowledgable hacker effort, plus pre-release designated bug testers, plus at least a couple of coordinating admin, is because of the perpetual borkage possible in testing. Now, it's not like Sid, where you are getting different packages every two weeks. Testing is *mostly* stable. The problem is, immediately after the launch of Lenny, Testing will reset, basically, with a dump of whatever's in Sid. So we'd be starting off with Sid and watching it get gradually more stable again. This is going to be *ALOT* of change. And it would require a large, coordinated effort to triage and bug-fix it to deliver a Level-3 safe MintUpdate bi-weekly.
This is one reason (okay, the big reason) why I was more in favor of wanting to base on Lenny, where the rolling is much slighter, and Lenny, by that time, would be stable, so the updates would, inherently, be Level 1 or 2 safe. And just eleventy times faster than Ubuntu, without it's bugs. So to produce Mint Debian, as it fits with Clems' vision, requires, I estimate, at least a council of 5 knowledgable hackers with enough time to sift through a slowly stabilizing Testing repo to ensure safe upgrades.
As cmost knowledgably says above, until the hacker volunteers are there, (and again, to those who've already volunteered to admin and bug-test, thank you), there's simply no reason to even attempt the distro.