Republicans these days love to complain about what they label “cancel culture,” whining about everything from college campus “censorship” to the traumatic dropping of “Mr.” from the name of the children’s toy Potato Head. But when they feel aggrieved they sure won’t hesitate to say “buh-bye.”
Case in point: the Republican National Committee is so distraught over what it says is systematically unfair treatment by the major television networks that it is examining how it might circumvent them in the next presidential debate cycle. David Bossie, president of Citizens United, told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Friday that the presidential debate process is not overhauled.
“We don’t need to count on just the networks. There are so many opportunities out there, so many platforms out there that we can go to and partner with to get the message out,” Bossie said without providing any specifics.
The head of the conservative group that Republicans have been especially dismayed by what he characterized as grandstanding moderators during GOP primary debates. “We have to not allow bad actors to infiltrate our debate process,” he said, which he defined as “moderators who aren’t really trying to ask questions to make the candidates front and center. They’re asking questions really not to impact primary Republican voters, but to have ‘gotcha’ questions and answers for the general election debate, because they all want to see their question and answer played during the general election.”
It should be noted that the pro-Republican Fox networks hosted five of the 12 GOP debates in 2015 and 2016. The others were hosted by CNN, CBS, ABC and CNBC.
Earlier this month RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel wrote to the leadership of the Commission on Presidential Debates complaining about what she said have been “repeated missteps and partisan actions that underscored its biases” and demanding a slew of changes.