The Nevada Democratic Party is working with Fox News Channel to host a debate with all the Democratic Party presidential candidates in August. This is, to put it mildly, insane. Fox News is a partisan Republican propaganda outlet, not a news station, and it is irresponsible for any candidate or party official to lend it the immense credibility of a presidential forum. It would be better to do this on MSNBC, CNN, C-Span, or just stream it on the Internet where progressive blogs can carry it.
I understand that the Nevada Democratic Party has decided to allow Fox News to televise the Democratic presidential debate on August 14, 2007 in Reno. I believe this is a mistake and I hope you will reconsider supporting this decision.
It is obvious to Democratic primary voters that Fox News is openly hostile to the Democratic Party with its exclusive line-up of conservative voices and conservative slant in its news. It's highly unlikely that its partisan audience will be persuaded to vote for Democrats nor should Democratic partisans be forced to patronize such a hostile news network to see its candidates debate one another.
More importantly, Fox News may choose to follow the example it set in a previous presidential debate when it cut away from the debate before it even finished to immediately offer a negative spin from their commentator in the studio, William Bennett. The audience had no time to absorb any positive message they may have received before they were inundated with a harshly partisan Republican spin on the entire Democratic field. They also put up a banner behind the candidates reading “Democrat Candidate Debate” instead of “Democratic Candidate Debate,” asked loaded questions, and produced vicious post-debate news “reports.” This did nothing to serve the Democratic candidates or the Democratic Party as a whole, and it certainly wasn’t “unfiltered.”
If Fox news were the only outlet available that would be one thing. But many outlets exist which would be thrilled to give the Democratic candidates a platform and a chance to make their case to the television audience without partisan Republican spin. I would urge you to retract your support for this counterproductive agreement and seek another news network to host this important event.
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