DNC Chair: ‘We’re going to have six debates. Period’
In a response to recent complaints from Democratic candidates, state party organizations, and voters in general, the Chair of the Democratic National Committee has doubled-down on the slim schedule of only six debates and unequivocally stated that more debates will not be added despite the complaints.
Report from Politico:
Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz dug in Thursday and said her party would stick to the six currently scheduled Democratic primary debates, one day after two vice chairs from within her organization broke ranks and called such a strict limit a “mistake.”
“We’re going to have six debates,” Wasserman Schultz told reporters flatly at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast. “Period.”
Wasserman Schultz has come under fire for the limited schedule, with Democratic presidential candidate Martin O’Malley leading the charge. O’Malley has said the limits are “rigged” and “ridiculous,” and devoted much of his speech to the DNC last month in Minneapolis to ripping the rules.
But the statement late Wednesday from two DNC vice chairs, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and R.T. Rybak, was notable because it came from within the party’s own power structure. “By limiting Democratic debates to just six, more people will feel excluded from our political process, rather than included,” Gabbard and Rybak wrote in a post on Facebook.
Wasserman Schultz said Thursday the “beauty of our party” is that it embraces divergent opinions, but that her decision on debates would stand.
At this point, the candidates are left to work among themselves in mounting a real fight against the small number of debates. Would Sanders, O’Malley and the others somehow band together and refuse appearing at the scheduled debates until more are added? I can’t see that happening since none of them want to risk being barred from the officially sanctioned broadcasts.
After all is said and done, I imagine six debates is what Democrats will be left with. Despite mounting pressure, the DNC seems unmoved so unless something major occurs, this is probably the end of it for now.