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RNC announces it is withdrawing from the Commission on Presidential Debates

WASHINGTON D.C., April 14, 2022 – The Republican National Committee under chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, announced today that it will be withdrawing from the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD).

The year-long decision comes after the RNC voted unanimously to withdraw from what it called the “biased CPD.”

“Debates are an important part of the democratic process, and the RNC is committed to free and fair debates,” McDanial said in a statement released today. “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.”

The RNC further stated that it will “find newer, better debate platforms to ensure that future nominees are not forced to go through the biased CPD in order to make their case to the American people.”

The RN said it welcomes debate and is not walking away from them, just away from CPD. The following examples where shared by the RNC that influenced its board’s decision to withdraw:

  • Waiting until 26 states had begun early voting before hosting the first presidential debate in 2020.
  • Making unilateral changes to previously agreed-upon debate formats and conditions, in some cases without even notifying the candidates.
  • Selecting a moderator in 2020 who had once worked for Joe Biden.
  • Failing to maintain the organization’s strict nonpartisanship, with a majority of its Board Members publicly disparaging the Republican-nominee.

According to Chairwoman McDaniel, RNC officials repeatedly asked the CPD to reform and make changes to future debates to ensure a fair and impartial forum but “unfortunately, the CPD was unwilling to make commonsense reforms.”

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