Monday, October 4

My reply

Below is a letter I received from one of my Senators in response to my letter regarding the Commission on Presidential Debates, and their XXXXXX

Dear Mr XXXX:

Thank you for contacting me about Presidential debates. I appreciate you sharing your concerns with me.

Presidential debates are run by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD), a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization funded through private donations. The goal of the CPD is to ensure that American voters have the opportunity to see the major candidates for President and Vice President debate and to help them make a more informed decision.

Critics of the CPD claim that it does not provide enough opportunity for independent and third party candidates to make their case before the American people. However, in many Presidential elections there have been more than one hundred declared candidates for the Presidency. The CPD has created a three-step process to determine whether a candidate has a legitimate chance of influencing the election. First, a candidate must meet the constitutional requirements for age and residency. Second, the candidate must have his or her name appear on enough state ballots to acquire 270 electoral votes, the number needed to be elected President. Lastly, a candidate must have demonstrated, through public opinion polls, the support of at least 15% of the electorate.

Because the CPD is a private organization, Congress does not have direct authority over how it chooses candidates. There are those who believe that because Presidential debates are a public service, the government should run them. Others believe letting the government control the debates could lead to abuse from whichever party controls the Presidency or Congress.

Thank you again for writing. I appreciate hearing from you on this issue and am glad you shared your views with me.

Carl Levin

Now for my reply:

Senator Levin,

Thank You for your reply but, I found it an insult to my intelligence.

You know as well as I that the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) is not a "nonpartisan organization" as you stated, it is a bipartisan organization created
by the former heads of the Republican and Democratic Parties in 1987 to, in their own words, "Take over the presidential debates".

The CPD was formed when the League of Woman Voters refused to allow the debate process to be co-opted by the secret back room agreements between the Republican
and Democratic nominees on how the debates would be conducted.

The CPD now controls not only what will be heard, but how it will be heard, and who will be heard, and amazingly it is only the Democrats and Republicans that are being
heard from since the CPD was took over the debates. What we now have is not a debate, but a joint pseudo-press conference where all the questions are known ahead of time and
the responses are scripted.

I can also tell by the tenor of your reply that you support the CPD, but why if Congress holds no sway over them, do you defend them so strongly?

You never seem to defend the small business owners of this state if you smell even a hint of possible impropriety, but you defend the CPD with all it's stench even though you have no "direct authority" over them.

As to the established criteria for determining if a "candidate has a legitimate chance of influencing the election", If Nader takes 2% of the vote away from Kerry, Mr Nader,
will influence the outcome of the election, is not that the reason that Democrats had been fighting to keep him off the ballot? .

If someone can legally hold the office and is on the ballot in states with a total of 270 votes in the Electoral College, then they should be in the debate plain and simple. Where or not you or I agree with their positions, their politics or their morals, the people will then decide, not the CPD.

But I forgot the idea of a level playing field is only for us ignorant, uneducated common folks, and like a number of other laws you have voted for, and shouldn't apply to the imperial ruling party politicians like yourself.

Thank You for helping me make my decisions for this and the next election cycle.

I Hope you get to enjoy retirement very soon.



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