RNC Unanimously Passes Resolution Refusing to Co-Sponsor Debates with CNN, NBC

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Aug. 16 2013 11:40 AM

RNC Unanimously Passes Resolution Refusing to Co-Sponsor Debates with CNN, NBC

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Not the Conservative News Network

Photo by Dominik Bindl/Getty Images

I posed the text of the resolution this morning, but I'd neglected to record the title: "RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF MEDIA OBJECTIVITY AND ACCOUNTABILITY AND OF AN ORDERLY PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY DEBATE PROCESS." That resolution, which puts NBC and CNN and their properties on notice for producing Hillary Clinton films, passed unanimously.

It's a slightly overblown story, because the RNC can't actually prevent candidates from participating in debates unless it does something more radical like deny them delegates for playing ball. But it's a gift Democrats will gladly accept. CNN has a Spanish channel; NBC owns Telemundo. Thinly sourced columns have been reporting that Republicans might prefer right-wing talk show hosts as moderators (which isn't a bad idea), and the DNC (via spox Michael Czin) is pouncing on that.

Instead of modifying their policies to actually present smart solutions for middle class families, the only thing the GOP can unite behind is a plan to continue to limit the audiences—and voters—to whom they will communicate. Now with reports that they are looking to have Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin moderate their debates, it raises questions about whether the RNC will ever be serious about outreach, or if they will continue to speak to -- and for -- the fringes of their party.

Etc, etc. This won't actually affect the GOP brand any more than the 2007 Democratic refusal to do Fox News debates hurt the Democratic brand.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.