Contact: Rina Shah
7 Gay Marriage Opponents in Monday’s CNN New Hampshire Debate
Fred Karger Left Out
State’s Gay Marriage Repeal Vote up Again Next Year
CNN’s Pre-established Criteria Questioned
MANCHESTER, NEW HAMPSHIRE – “CNN appears to be aiding and abetting the attempted overturning of gay marriage in one of the five states where it is legal,” said Republican Presidential candidate Fred Karger, who wants to be included in CNN’s New Hampshire Debate next Monday. “Mitt Romney, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Tim Pawlenty, Herbert Cain and even Ron Paul have demonized the gay community time and time again. Now these 7 debaters will go unanswered on Monday, just months away from a vote to repeal gay marriage in New Hampshire.”
See Politico Story of March 5, 2011:
N.H. gay-marriage test for 2012ers?
By: Kasie Hunt and Andy Barr
Karger went on to say, “The New Hampshire State Legislature will be taking a vote early next year on whether or not to repeal that state’s 1 ½ year old marriage equality law. I testified at the State House on February 17, 2011 against the first of four bills to end gay marriage in New Hampshire. I have been a strong supporter of full marriage equality forever. ”
“The issue of gay marriage and the New Hampshire law will certainly come up in Monday’s debate. All 7 Republican candidates will be able to speak vociferously against marriage equality before millions of people, and they will go unanswered. CNN’s New Hampshire Debate will not be fair or balanced.”
“As the first openly gay candidate to run for President, I should be allowed on that stage. I am the only full equality candidate running for President, including Barack Obama, whose position on gay marriage is ‘evolving.’”
Karger Asks Supporters to Contact CNN
“I will ask my supporters in New Hampshire and around the country to contact CNN executives and ask them to “Let Fred In.” It’s easy. Just write in the subject line,
“Let Fred In” and send to:
Jim Walton, President, CNN Worldwide: email@example.com
Ken Jautz, Executive Vice President CNN: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit www.LetFredIn.com for Fred’s earlier Memorandum to Messrs. Walton and Jautz.
CNN’s “Pre-established Objective” Criteria Excludes
Gary Johnson & Fred Karger and Appears Questionable
The Karger campaign has many questions about the criteria which CNN used to invite participants to its New Hampshire Debate. It appears that CNN’s debate criteria is more ‘subjective’ than ‘objective.’
Did CNN invite Rudy Giuliani just for ratings? He has not shown any interest in running for President. They have also invited Donald Trump and Mitch Daniels – both of whom have announced that they were not even running!
CNN’s Statement on its Criteria
“A candidate must have received an average of at least 2% in at least three national polls released between April 1 and April 30 that were conducted by the following: ABC, AP, Bloomberg, CBS, CNN, FOX, Gallup, Los Angeles Times, Marist, McClatchy, NBC, Newsweek, Pew, Quinnipiac, Reuters, USA Today and Time.”
“A candidate must have received an average of at least 2.00 % in at least three national polls released between May 1 and May 31 that were conducted by the following: ABC, AP, Bloomberg, CBS, CNN, FOX, Gallup, Los Angeles Times, Marist, McClatchy, NBC, Newsweek, Pew, Quinnipiac, Reuters, USA Today and Time.”
“A candidate must have received an average of at least 2.00 % in polls of New Hampshire voters conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center released between May 1 and May 31.”
FEC Law Regulating Debates
The Federal Election Commission (FEC) is very clear on the rules governing debates stating that, “The organization staging the debate must select the candidates based on pre-established objective criteria.” CNN’s criteria is objective, but was the criteria pre-established?
Pre-Established Criteria Questions
The FEC states that criteria must be pre-established, so that the staging organizations choose participants who fit the objective criteria from day one.
1) Invitations were sent to Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Herman Cain, Tim Pawlenty, Mitch Daniels, Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, Jon Huntsman, Sarah Palin and Donald Trump. When were the invitations sent?
2) Were the invitations sent out on a rolling basis, rather than after the criteria period closed? Donald Trump was invited, but he announced he would not run on May 16, 2011. Mike Huckabee was invited, but he announced he would not run on May 14, 2011. Haley Barbour was not invited. Barbour met the criteria after the April 22, 2011 release of a Gallup poll http://www.gallup.com/poll/147233/huckabee-trump-romney-pace-gop-field-2012.aspx. Haley Barbour announced he would not run on April 25, 2011.
3) Jon Huntsman: Jon Huntsman did not meet the polling criteria until he received 4% in the UNH poll, which was released on May 23, 2011 at 5pm: http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/images/05/23/topnh1.pdf. Jon Huntsman announced he would not participate in the debate on May 27, 2011: http://politics.blogs.foxnews.com/2011/05/27/huntsman-will-not-participate-new-hampshire-debate. In the three full days between 5pm May 23, 2011 and May 27, 2011, Jon Huntsman would have needed to receive an invitation from the debate sponsors and have decided to decline that invitation.
4) Herman Cain: Herman Cain announced on or before May 24, 2011 that he would attend the NH debate. When was he invited? http://conservativedailynews.com/2011/05/herman-cain-to-attend-debate-in-new-hampshire/. Herman Cain met the criteria on April 28, 2011.
5) Rudy Giuliani: Rudy Giuliani qualified on May 4, 2011, when the UNH Survey Center released its Granite State Poll. When was he invited?
6) Polling firms excluded: Why did the criteria exclude the following polling firms: Rasmussen, Zogby, Public Policy Polling and Suffolk – all of whom conducted national polls on the Republican 2012 primary during April and May 2011?
7) Debate Date Moved: The Debate was originally set for June 7th, but was rescheduled to June 13th. The decision to change the debate date was announced on April 27, 2011: http://www.wmur.com/r/27693303/detail.html. Why was the date moved?
8) UNH Survey Center Polls: When were the UNH Survey Center’s two polls about the 2012 Republican primary (which came out in May 2011) commissioned? Were they commissioned prior to April 1, 2011 (the beginning of the criteria period)? It is important to note that in May 2007, the UNH Survey Center did not conduct any polls about the Republican primary.
June 5, 2007 New Hampshire Debate Had 10 Participants – Would Only Have Been 6
The 2007 debate was also hosted by CNN, WMUR TV and the New Hampshire Union Leader. In this debate there were 10 participants: Sam Brownback, Jim Gilmore, Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, Duncan Hunter, John McCain, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Tom Tancredo and Tommy Thompson. The pre-established objective criteria for this debate was never released; however, by 2011 standards, it would have been a 6-man debate. During April and May of 2007, Jim Gilmore, Duncan Hunter, Ron Paul and Tommy Thompson did not average 2% on three national polls: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nationwide_opinion_polling_for_the_Republican_Party_2008_presidential_candidates.
If the same criteria was applied 4 years ago, UNH Survey Center polling would have excluded Mike Huckabee, Duncan Hunter, Jim Gilmore and Ron Paul, all of whom would not have met a 2% polling criteria: i.a.cnn.net/cnn/2007/images/07/17/topnh4b.pdf.
“I stated all my reasons for being including in the CNN Debate in a Memorandum to CNN executives on May 31, 2011: CLICK HERE. I would hope that the organizers would consent and let me in to Monday’s debate,” said Karger. “CNN should lead the way and open up its debate to all serious Presidential candidates, not just some.”
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