By Richard Winger for Ballot Access News - On February 1, U.S. District Court Judge Tanya S. Chutkan issued a 28-page opinion in Level the Playing Field v Federal Election Commission, 1:15cv-1397, D.C. She ruled that the FEC clearly did not look at the evidence presented by the plaintiffs Peter Ackerman, the Libertarian Party, the Green Party, and Level the Playing Field. The evidence is voluminous and shows that the Commission on Presidential Debates, and particular commissioners, are not non-partisan when they act to keep all presidential candidates (except for the Democratic and Republican nominees) out of the general election debates. The decision says that when the FEC refused to investigate the behavior of the Commission on Presidential Debates
National Commission on Presidential Debates
By Staff of IVN - The Commission on Presidential Debates, or CPD, has been under fire for its policies for several years now. For the past 24 years, the CPD has excluded anyone but the Republican and Democratic nominees from participating in the three presidential debates and one vice-presidential debate in September and October before the election. An important lawsuit, Level the Playing Field, et al. v. Federal Election Commission, goes before a federal judge on Jan. 5. That suit seeks to accomplish what the CPD has refused to do on its own: change the rules to stop systematically preventing independent candidates from debating – and becoming president. Meanwhile, it seems no coincidence that the CPD itself is disintegrating.
By Kevin Zeese for OpEd News. A recent USA Today poll found 76% of voters want debates with four candidates including not just the two most hated candidates in history, the Republican and Democratic nominees and their vice presidential running mates, but Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka of the Greens, and Gary Johnson and Bill Weld of the Libertarians. Any candidate on enough ballots to achieve 270 electoral college votes should be in the debates. The people have a right to see all candidates debating the issues who are on their ballots. The deceptive debate commission, which is called a debate commission just to hide the truth: it is a corporation of the Democrats and Republicans whose purpose is to limit debates to their two parties, has no legitimacy. It has a major conflict of interest -- why should the two establishment parties decide their opponents cannot debate? It is an obvious conflict of interest that the media should be calling out. The media should join the demand of the people -- open debate are essential for democracy.
By Jeff Cohen for Common Dreams. Debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will not do much to enlighten the political discourse in the United States. The US public deserves more and 2016 is the year for the public to insist on more. The phony "Commission" on Presidential Debates is really a Democratic Party-Republican Party corporation funded by big business. They are not a "Commission" in any sense of the word, they are a corporation using the word commission as a disguise. The two parties and big business should not be deciding who is included in the presidential debates. Below is an article from Jeff Cohen of Roots Action focusing on uring the media to insist on inclusive 4-person debates. It is a useful petition but without much more it will be ineffective. The corporate media makes hundreds of millions in profits from the elections. They will not go against the two establishment parties that buy advertising on their networks. More is needed. The path to inclusion is not going to come from the media which has been consistently complicit in the debate charade. More is needed. The path will come if we can convince one of the two candidates to urge inclusion of all four campaigns -- the Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians and Greens -- in the debates. Stein-Baraka wrote an open letter to Trump and Clinton yesterday calling for four-war debates.
By Scott McLarty for the Green Party. The Commission on Presidential Debates is a charade. It may have a name that sounds official but in fact it is a corporation created by Democratic and Republican political operatives and funded by big business interests to keep independent parties like the Green and Libertatian Party and candidates out of the presidential debates. A lawsuite has been filed to require the so-called Commission become non-partisan and us objective criteria to determine debate participation. This would be long overdue changes because non-participation in presidential debates is a barrier to fair elections. The Green Party of the United States has joined in a lawsuit filed in a federal district court in Washington, D.C. on Monday alleging that third-party and independent candidates have been illegally excluded from the televised presidential debates in general elections. The lawsuit charges that the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) and certain of its directors have violated federal election law.