Ken Berwitz

Did you know that the Republican National Committee had scheduled a debate on NBC for this coming February?

Well, if you did, you don\’t anymore.  

After the CNBC debacle on Wednesday, the RNC has suspended that debate.

Excerpted from Rebecca Shabad\’s article at (a no doubt gleeful) CBS News:

The Republican National Committee on Friday announced that it\’s suspending its partnership with NBC News for a GOP presidential debate that\’s scheduled for late February.

“The RNC\’s sole role in the primary debate process is to ensure that our candidates are given a full and fair opportunity to lay out their vision for America\’s future. We simply cannot continue with NBC without full consultation with our campaigns,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus wrote in a letter to NBC News Chairman Andy Lack.

The debate is scheduled for February 26, and Priebus said the National Review can remain on as a participant in the debate.

In a statement NBC said, “This is a disappointing development. However, along with our debate broadcast partners at Telemundo we will work in good faith to resolve this matter with the Republican Party.”

A heads-up for Andy Lack:  the problem is something your network lacks.  Any vestige of impartiality.  

After what happened on the NBC affiliated CNBC, and after years of relentless Republican-bashing by its other affiliates, MSNBC and Telemundo, what did you expect?  A thank you note for hosting the next debate, coupled with a request for Chris Matthews and Rachel Maddow to co-moderate?

Good for Reince Priebus.  It is not only about time, it is way past about time.  

But I have two suggestions:

1) Do NOT agree to reinstate the debate until and unless NBC makes it provably clear that this will not be another attack-fest on behalf of Democrats.

2) Make it clear that if the same ludicrous, intentionally negative, issue-less questions are asked at that time, the candidates will walk off the stage.

Maybe that will do something for you…though, this being NBC, I doubt it.

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