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August 16, 2013

In Other RNC News....Ban On CNN/NBC Debates Passes

NBC and CNN can have their Hillary shows or they can have GOP debates.

Top RNC leaders voted unanimously on a resolution stating that the national party will not partner with the networks nor sanction any primary debates they plan to sponsor and broadcast. (Read a full copy of the resolution below.)

Cable and broadcast television networks have sponsored and produced dozens of presidential primary debates during the recent presidential election cycles, often partnering with state parties or other political organizations in order to draw candidates to the televised events. During the 2012 cycle, top networks sponsored at least 20 debates that stretched from May 2011 to February 2012; CNN hosted seven debates, while NBC News, CNBC or MSNBC hosted four.

The networks do not need the permission of the RNC to host such debates, but the resolution approved Friday likely will prompt state party officials and other conservative organizations to not sponsor, sanction or attend any debates hosted by NBC or CNN and thus keep candidates from attending.

The last bit is the rub. The RNC really can't control this unless...they are willing to penalize states/candidates that have unapproved debates. The odds of that actually happening are fairly low.

The big penalty would be delegates. State parties hate that because it's a fun time and important people go to the national convention and state officials want to be important so they won't agree to dock each other's votes. Even if say the SC GOP was to hold a debate on CNN, people in Iowa won't vote to dock their delegates because next time it could be them. No one will want to set the precedent that the national committee can boss around the states that way.

As for candidates, if you're a 3rd tier guy who isn't getting any traction yet, you'll go because you're not worried about losing delegates you can't get unless you make a splash in a debate (think Newt and Santorum last time). You're going to go and dare the RNC to punish you and your theoretical delegates. But first you have to get them and that means air time.

Maybe it'll lead to a compromise on moderators, though I doubt VERY IMPORTANT NEWS ORGANIZATIONS will be willing to let a party (other than the Democrats) be seen as making editorial decisions for them.

One thing I don't like about it is plays into this narrative that Hillary is something to be feared. I bet these shows tank. Republicans are spending far to much time fretting about this woman.

Keep a few things in mind about her...

She was inevitable in 2008. And then she wasn't.

She's a terrible candidate. Other than hardcore liberals and Team Girl Power, a lot of people just don't like her.

The Obama people (staff and hardcore supporters) HATED her. remember she represented the ugly past of compromise and triangulation. They wanted the real deal lefty God. Do you really think she's going to get to bask in the reflective glow of Obama?

Biden's going to run too. He's not going to win and he's not going to be the darling of the Obama left but he and his surrogates will leak plenty of news about how Hillary badly served the One True Democratic God. She's not going to stroll to the nomination as the rightful inheritor of the Obama mantle without getting bloodied in the process.

There are all these stories about how no one will run if Hillary! gets in. Bull. Some obscure lefty with a new and exciting story will jump in and Democrats will fall in love with the shiny new toy. Hillary! may run and she may get the nomination but it won't be by acclimation and she won't be unblemished heading into the general.

It's good to see the GOP call out the media in any way but stop building Hillary! up as if she's Ronald Reagan in 1984. Act like you're happy to have her run, even if you aren't. Don't psych yourself out of the game before it even starts.


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posted by DrewM. at 01:58 PM

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