Sunday, November 13, 2011

GOP Candidates Blast CBS News’ for ‘Disgraceful’ Bias at South Carolina Debate

 I am a Ron Paul supporter and it came as a shock to me that someone that is in double digits in the polls and is ranked 3rd among the presidential candidates in many of the polls got less then 90 seconds of time in a 90 minute debate.  This was an unfair disgrace.

- Michael

SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Fireworks were few and far between at the GOP’s foreign policy debate tonight, but if any issue provoked the ire of some candidates it was not each other but rather how CBS News’ moderator Scott Pelley ran the event.

Numerous candidates from Rep. Michele Bachmann to Rep. Ron Paul complained about unfair treatment from the network, arguing that rival campaigns had received far more attention during the debate. The Bachmann campaign went so far as to release an email that they said spokeswoman Alice Stewart had “inadvertently received” from CBS earlier in the day.

In the email string, CBS News’ political analyst John Dickerson said that Bachmann was “not going to get many questions during the debate and she’s nearly off the charts,” a reference to the Minnesota congresswoman’s low standing in the polls.

After the debate Stewart said that CBS News was guilty of “a bias” against Bachmann.

“I inadvertently received an email where CBS made it clear that Michele was going to receive fewer questions than the other candidates. Clearly this is a problem,” Stewart said. “The debates are an opportunity for the candidates to share their views on the issues. This is an important issue for Congresswoman Bachmann. She’s a member of the House, the Foreign Intelligence Committee. She knows this issue unlike the other candidates on this stage and the email chain that I inadvertently received clearly indicates a bias on CBS’ part to limit the questions to Congresswoman Bachmann.

“We had discussions about [it] and they indicated that they would make sure that the level — that the playing field would be level,” Stewart added. “However she received substantially fewer questions than the other candidates and she wasn’t allowed any follow-ups.

“There’s nothing that can be done now. The debate’s over,” Stewart said. “They assured us prior to debate that it was going to be a fair and level playing field and it certainly wasn’t. We didn’t want to have to get the word out but they made it clear to us that it was going to be fair and it wasn’t.”

Other candidates also complained about their treatment during the debate.

Paul’s spokesman Jesse Benton accused CBS of “disgraceful” actions that stemmed from an “arrogance” in thinking that “they can choose the next president.”

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