Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel pledged Tuesday the RNC would advise future presidential nominees to refuse cooperation with the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) after the supposedly non-partisan group operated as a Democrat campaign arm last fall.
“After repeated missteps and partisan actions that underscored its biases last cycle,” McDaniel wrote in a statement, “it’s clear that the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) is no longer providing the fair and impartial forum for presidential debates which the law requires and the American people deserve.”
At issue was the CPD’s refusal to host a single debate before early voting began in an election that would be decided by less than 43,000 ballots across three tipping-point states. McDaniel is demanding the debate commission pledge to holding at least one debate before voting begins in any state, “and in no case after the deadline for states to mail absentee ballots to uniformed and overseas voters.”
The group’s board of directors meanwhile, made unilateral changes to the high-stakes events often in favor of then-candidate Joe Biden.
It is inexcusable that the CPD waited to host a single debate until after the start of early voting in 8 states, absentee voting in 26 states, and uniformed/overseas voting in all 50 states. (2/4)
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) June 2, 2021
McDaniel said she would urge future candidates to not cooperate with the debate commission absent significant changes.
“The Republican Party needs assurances that the CPD will make meaningful reforms to the debate process by working with the stakeholders to restore the faith and legitimacy it has lost,” McDaniel wrote. “If not, as RNC Chairman, I will have no choice but to advise future Republican candidates against participating in CPD-hosted debates.”
The independent commission could not have handled last fall’s contest more poorly for an organization that claims to be non-partisan. By October, it became clear who the commission was working for, and it wasn’t Donald Trump.
After a disastrous first debate moderated by Fox News’ Chris Wallace, who lost control of the candidates trading barbs at each other in prime time, the commission adopted a
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