In just over a month, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney will square off in a series of debates. It's a time-honored tradition, and if they are anything like the GOP primary debates, hopefully people will learn more about the candidates and make an informed decision. However, what is blatantly missing from the debate line-up is any moderator from the center-right. Why is it that the so-called "nonpartisan" Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) can only pick left-wing moderators?
As announced by the CPD, the one vice presidential debate and three presidential debates will be moderated by the following people:
First presidential debate:
Jim Lehrer, Executive Editor of the PBS NewsHour
Wednesday, October 3, University of Denver, Denver, CO
Vice presidential debate:
Martha Raddatz, Senior Foreign Affairs Correspondent, ABC News
Thursday, October 11, Centre College, Danville, KY
Second presidential debate (town meeting):
Candy Crowley, Chief Political Correspondent, CNN and Anchor, CNN's State of the Union
Tuesday, October 16, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY
Third presidential debate:
Bob Schieffer, Chief Washington Correspondent, CBS News and Moderator, Face the Nation
Monday, October 22, Lynn University, Boca Raton, FL
Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr. and Michael D. McCurry, co-chairmen of the "nonpartisan" CPD, had this to say about their selections: "These journalists bring extensive experience to the job of moderating, and understand the importance of using the expanded time periods to maximum benefit. We are grateful for their willingness to moderate, and confident that the public will learn more about the candidates and the issues as a result."
In referencing the "expanded time periods," the moderators are referring to new formats for the debate which are designed to allow the candidates time for more in-depth discussions:
First presidential debate
The debate will focus on domestic policy and be divided into six time segments of approximately 15 minutes each on topics to be selected by the moderator and announced several weeks before the debate.
The moderator will open each segment with a question, after which each candidate will have two minutes to respond. The moderator will use the balance of the time in the segment for a discussion of the topic.
Vice presidential debate
The debate will cover both foreign and domestic topics and be divided into nine time segments of approximately 10 minutes each. The moderator will ask an opening question, after which each candidate will have two minutes to respond. The moderator will use the balance of the time in the segment for a discussion of the question.
Second presidential debate
The second presidential debate will take the form of a town meeting, in which citizens will ask questions of the candidates on foreign and domestic issues. Candidates each will have two minutes to respond, and an additional minute for the moderator to facilitate a discussion. The town meeting participants will be undecided voters selected by the Gallup Organization.
Third presidential debate
The format for the debate will be identical to the first presidential debate and will focus on foreign policy.
The more discussion, the better. The more in-depth a candidate is forced to go on an issue, the less he can rely simply on talking points. But the real problem here is about who is leading the discussions. Why is it the same, tired "journalists" from the left? If this commission is truly nonpartisan, why continue to pick left-wing media hosts? It absolutely makes no sense.
CNN is represented, but not Fox News? Just the other day CNN's Soledad O'Brien was caught referencing a story from a left-wing blog as one of her "sources" when she was interviewing a Republican legislator from Virginia.
On CBS, Bob Scheiffer conducted the first Romney/Ryan interview for "60 Minutes," and, as reported by The Right Scoop, the portion of the interview where Ryan says, "My mom is a Medicare senior in Florida," was edited out of the broadcast. Hmmmm... perhaps it doesn't go with Obama and the media's plan to paint Ryan as an enemy of seniors?
There are so many examples of left-wing bias, and yet these same people are used over and over again for events such as the upcoming presidential debates. How could the "nonpartisan" commission be so stupid?