MAKE DEBATE CONTRACTS PUBLIC
For Immediate Release
September 5, 2008
Contact: George Farah (617-828-8296)
Washington, D.C. -- Debate watchdog group Open Debates calls on the Commission on Presidential Debates to make public the secret debate contract negotiated by the Obama and McCain campaigns.
Senator Lindsay Graham of the McCain campaign and Representative Rahm Emanuel of the Obama campaign have negotiated a detailed contract that dictates the terms of the 2008 presidential debates, including who can participate and the structure of the formats. The Commission on Presidential Debates has agreed to implement the debate contract.
Yet, in order to shield the major party candidates from criticism, the Commission on Presidential Debates has refused to release the debate contract to the public.
”It is vital that the public has full access to information in a sound democracy,” said George Farah, executive director of Open Debates. “Unfortunately, the Commission on Presidential Debates is more concerned with the partisan interests of the two candidates than the democratic interests of the public, and it has denied voters access to critical information about our most sacred political forums.”
A copy of the 2004 debate contract negotiated by the Bush and Kerry campaigns is available at: