Open the Debates!
This is your central resource for information on the Nader/Gonzalez "Open the Debates!" effort. We will be adding Calls to Action, resources and materials, backgrounders and talking points for our volunteers to use in their efforts to raise awareness and push for recognition of the Nader/Gonzalez agenda in the national debate leading up to election day.
Links to more information on the debates:
Click here to go to our "Open the Debates!" video page, where we will post videos from campaign appearances and special guests, with the "Open the Debates!" message.
Click here to join the Nader/Gonzalez Freedom Writers project — our e-mail campaigns to get the attention of the media and corporate debate sponsors.
Click here to go the the votenader.org Issues page on the need to open the presidential debates as part of a broader agenda of electoral reform.
The following Op-Ed appeared in the September 25th edition of USA Today:
By Ralph Nader
Two decades ago, the Republicrats hijacked our presidential debates from the League of Women Voters, and replaced the stewards of the one public debate that is watched by tens of millions with a two-party citadel run by a couple of party cronies.
Walter Cronkite, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the league, respectively, call the commission debates: “unconscionable fraud,” “mockery” and “charades devoid of substance, spontaneity, and honest answers to tough questions.”
This private commission, funded by large corporations that my running mate, Matt Gonzalez, and I have gone after for years, says you have to be at 15% in five undisclosed stealth polls by five stealth media conglomerates that have shut us out all campaign.
That catch-22 threshold suffocates third parties and their fresh ideas. If Minnesota did the same, Jesse Ventura never would have jumped from single digits to governor.
All six candidates who are on enough state ballots to win the election should be allowed to debate. The majority of Americans in a 2004 Zogby poll agree with that idea.
Even all 65 ranked teams at the NCAA tournament get a chance at the Final Four. Rationing debates rations voter choice.
Ralph Nader is an independent candidate for president.
Here are five ways you can take action to
Open the Debates:
- Write letters to the editor, to the corporations and organizations sponsoring the CPD debates, to the debate moderators and broadcast organizations, and to your friends and family members. Watch this space for links to writing samples you can use for your campaign.
- The debate schedule and moderators’ contact information is listed below.
- Click here to see the national sponsors for the CPD debates, with contact information for your phone or letter-writing campaign.
- Contact information for the Commission on Presidential Debates, the debate broadcasters, and the other presidential campaigns is listed below.
- Click here to go to our talk radio call-in information page, and check back often for updates.
- Support the Open Debates campaign to reform the Presidential Debates process by signing their online petition.
- Crank up a budding petition effort started earlier this month at www.thepetitionsite.com, with the ambitious goal of gathering 100,000 signatures for the inclusion of Ralph Nader and Bob Barr in the debates.
Commission and moderators’ contact information:
Commission on Presidential Debates
1200 New Hampshire Ave NW #445
Washington, DC 20036
Schedule & Moderators 2008
Friday, September 26th, First Presidential Debate
The University of Mississippi, Oxford
Executive Editor and Anchor, The NewsHour on PBS
2700 South Quincy Street
Arlington, VA 22206
Thursday, October 2nd, Vice-Presidential Debate
Washington University, St Louis, Missouri
Senior Correspondent, The NewsHour, Moderator & Managing Editor, Washington Week
Tuesday, October 7th, Second Presidential Debate
Belmont University, Nashville, Tennessee
Wednesday, October 15th, Third Presidential Debate
Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York
Chief Washington Correspondent and Host, Face the Nation
333 North Michigan Avenue
P.O. Box 8102
Chicago, IL 60680
E-mail contact form at http://my.barackobama.com/page/s/contact2
P.O. Box 16118
Arlington, VA 22215
E-mail contact form at http://www.johnmccain.com/Contact/