RNC Unanimously Votes to Withdraw From the Commission on Presidential Debates


The Republican National Committee unanimously voted to withdraw from the Commission on Presidential Debates on Thursday.

GOP presidential candidates have participated in the CPD debates in every election for over 30 years.

Republican presidential hopefuls will now be asked to sign a pledge saying that they will only appear at party-sanctioned primary and general election debates.

The RNC said that the commission is “biased” and vowed to find “newer, better” platforms.

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“The Commission on Presidential Debates is biased and has refused to enact simple and commonsense reforms to help ensure fair debates including hosting debates before voting begins and selecting moderators who have never worked for candidates on the debate stage,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said in a statement.

In January, McDaniel detailed the bias towards Democrats in a letter to the commission.

“The RNC has a duty to ensure that its future presidential nominees have the opportunity to debate their opponents on a level playing field. So long as the CPD appears intent on stonewalling the meaningful reforms necessary to restore its credibility with the Republican Party as a fair and nonpartisan actor, the RNC will take every step to ensure that future Republican presidential nominees are given that opportunity elsewhere,” McDaniel wrote in the letter that she posted to Twitter.

McDaniel added, “Accordingly, the RNC will initiate the process of amending the Rules of the Republican Party at our upcoming Winter Meeting to prohibit future Republican nominees from participating in CPD-sponsored debates.”

As an example, McDaniel noted that the 2020 debates started after early voting had already began in many states.

To fix the problems, McDaniels suggested adopting term limits for the CPD’s board of directors, holding the first debate before the start of any early voting, installing a “code of conduct” to tamper partisan moderators, and asked for a transparent process for selection of the moderators.

“The CPD deals directly with candidates for President and Vice President who qualify for participation in the CPD’s general election debates,” the commission said in a statement obtained by CBS News. “The CPD’s plans for 2024 will be based on fairness, neutrality and a firm commitment to help the American public learn about the candidates and the issues.”

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