The Liberty Movement, the Two-Party State and the Commission on Presidential Debates

American Idolatry considers the future of the "liberty movement" inspired by the presidential campaign of Ron Paul in 2008, and argues that beyond vetting potential movement favorites for president in 2012 (with specific mention of Gary Johnson) a top priority of the movement should be "challenging the two-party system":
Another top priority for the liberty movement is to start challenging the two-party system. This may be the easiest to accomplish. The majority of Americans don't belong to a party, and it's becoming very popular for pundits to come out as independents as well (see Bill O'Reilly and Glenn Beck). I would prefer to see more Independent candidates, but if it takes an actual third party then so be it. There's a push to make the Tea Party movement a formal political party. Good idea, but as I may have mentioned here before (and certainly have in conversation), the Tea Partiers seem to love Sarah Palin, and that would be one step forward and two steps back. She's just a neo-con who likes to talk about being a maverick. Regardless, our goal should be a massive reform of the Commission on Presidential Debates. The Commission claims to be non-partisan. They aren't. They're bi-partisan. Created by the DNC and the RNC in 1987, they have a vested interest in making sure that no third party or independent candidates are included in the debates (Ross Perot not withstanding). This should be the biggest movement in America. Regardless of ideology or issues stances, Americans know that they are not represented by the two major parties. Our goal for 2012 is to have made major headway in raising awareness of this issue, and by 2016 to have full representation of viable third party and independent candidates at the presidential debates.
The rigging of the presidential debate process by the Commission on Presidential Debates is listed on Project Censored's Top 25 Censored Stories for 2010, which provides a short history of the CPD (via Jaundicedaye):

The Obama and McCain campaigns jointly negotiated a detailed secret contract dictating the terms of the 2008 debates. This included who got to participate, what topics were to be raised, and the structure of the debate formats.

Since 1987, a private corporation created by and for the Republican and Democratic parties called the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) has sponsored the US Presidential debates and implemented debate contracts. In order to shield the major party candidates from criticism, CPD has refused to release debate contract information to the public.

In 1986, the Republican and Democratic National Committees ratified an agreement “to take over the presidential debates” from the nonpartisan League of Women Voters. Fifteen months later, then-Republican Party chair Frank Fahrenkopf and then-Democratic Party chair Paul Kirk incorporated the Commission on Presidential Debates. Fahrenkopf and Kirk still co-chair the Commission on Presidential Debates, and every four years it implements and conceals contracts jointly drafted by the Republican and Democratic nominees.

Before the CPD’s formation, the League of Women Voters served as a genuinely nonpartisan presidential debate sponsor from 1976 until 1984, ensuring the inclusion of popular independent candidates and prohibiting major party campaigns from manipulating debate formats.

For more information on the movement to reform the presidential debate process, check out Open Debates.


paulie said...

This would be good for IPR, I think...

d.eris said...

It's hard to tell sometimes.

paulie said...

Ask me if you're ever not sure.