Republican National Committee officials have said their party’s nominee for president will not take part in any debates organized by the Commission on Presidential Debates due to fears of partisan bias.
Ronna McDaniel, the chairwoman, advised potential debate hosts not to “waste your time.” She wrote a letter to the committee outlining the RNC’s past complaints about the debate format and suggesting improvements that need to be made before Republican contenders for president will agree to participate in the debates. To “prohibit future Republican nominees from participating in CPD-sponsored debates,” the letter is a prelude to a rule change at the RNC winter meeting.
“In answer to the Commission on Presidential Debates’ request for proposals, we have some news for any interested parties: don’t bother. The Republican nominee has decided not to take part in any debates organized by the faulty and biased CPD “On Monday, McDaniel made a tweet.
The RNC sent a letter to the CPD earlier this month proposing a number of rule changes, including a prohibition on debates after early voting has begun, the notification of candidates of changes to previously agreed-upon rules, the prohibition of moderators who have a conflict of interest with a candidate, the maintenance of the commission as strictly nonpartisan, and the prohibition of board members from disparaging candidates.
Limits on how long someone can serve on the board and a set of ethics guidelines for directors would be among the proposed rule changes.
The letter claims that the RNC has been in contact with the CPD since June, but that the party is still unsatisfied with the CPD’s answer. According to the letter, the organization’s “unique, nonpartisan position in American elections compels it to stand above the political fray,” therefore these suggestions are “common sense answers” for them to maintain their independence. The lack of these long-overdue changes in CPD policy comes as a surprise to us, but we think it would surprise most impartial observers.
When running for a fourth term as Republican Party leader, McDaniel faces opposition from attorney Harmeet Dhillon. At a meeting later this week, more than 160 members with voting privileges will choose the incoming chair.