RNC’s Priebus sets conditions for debate moderators

Updated
 

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus isn’t backing down from his threats to cut NBC and CNN out of hosting 2016 presidential primary debates, unless they agree to scrap plans to air specials on Hillary Clinton. I think this has more to do with Priebus wanting fewer debates, and he’s using the Clinton productions as a pretense, but he’s nevertheless not budging.

The RNC chair appeared on msnbc’s “Morning Joe” earlier today and co-host Mika Brzezinski asked a good point: Priebus was willing to appear this morning on her show, even though msnbc is part of NBC, because he “expected an honest and fair conversation.” If the head of the RNC can expect to be treated well on “Morning Joe,” why necessarily assume an NBC-sponsored debate would treat Republicans unfairly?

PREIBUS: Listen, but I’m not going to have you [Mika Brzezinski] moderate the Republican debates in our primary. I mean there’s a difference.

NICOLE WALLACE: Why not?

PREIBUS: Because you’re not interested, because you’re not actually interested in the future of the Republican Party and our nominees. That’s not a slam on you, Mika, but I have to choose moderators that are actually interested in the Republican Party and our nominees.

Wait, what? The chair of the RNC only wants debate moderators concerned with the future of the party? It certainly sounds as if Priebus doesn’t want objective or neutral hosts; he wants debates run by party loyalists.

That’s just not how the game is supposed to be played. Republican candidates? Great. Republican audiences? No problem. But the moderators have to support the Republican cause, too?

Reince Priebus, Debates, Hillary Clinton and RNC

RNC's Priebus sets conditions for debate moderators

Updated