The Corner

Politics & Policy

Debbie Wasserman Schultz: I’m Trying to Manipulate the Debates for Democracy

Some lies are so extraordinarily brazen in nature that one is reluctantly rather impressed by them. This one — as with so much that comes out of Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s mouth — falls squarely into that category:

Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz on Sunday said she scheduled primary debates with the goal of maximizing media attention for the party’s presidential candidates.

“I did my best to make sure, along with my staff and along with our debate partners, to come up with a schedule that we felt was going . . . to maximize the opportunity for voters to see our candidates,” Wasserman Schultz said on CNN’s “Reliable Sources.”

And how so? Well:

Wasserman Schultz said scheduling more debates would “take away” from opportunities for voters to see candidates in person on the campaign trail.

Brilliant.

Leaving aside that debates are in fact complementary to campaigning — where else can you see your favorite candidate challenged rather than bolstered? — this really is no answer at all. Had Wasserman Schultz been asked why the Democrats hadn’t hosted 30 or 40 debates, her response might have been reasonable. But she wasn’t, and besides, that’s not the primary criticism of this year’s schedule. The primary criticism is that the Democratic party has organized only six debates in toto, and that it has elected to air them when nobody will be watching. As the official schedule confirms, the last three Democratic debates have been held on the weekend, one of them in direct competition with a major sporting event. Another debate — cleverly called a “forum” and set apart from the sanctioned events — was broadcast on Fusion, which most people haven’t heard of, let alone subscribed to.

By taking the approach that she has, Wasserman Schultz is hoping that the audience will think she was being asked, “Why have you kept the number of debates so low?” when she was really being asked, “Why have you made sure that the few debates you are holding will gain no audience?”

The answer to that second question is obvious. As The Hill observes,

Democrats have criticized the chairwoman, a congresswoman from Florida, for limiting the number of debates, accusing the party of displaying favoritism toward front-runner Hillary Clinton.

Given how acutely the polls have tightened, this ploy may ultimately be backfiring. It couldn’t have happened to a nicer politician.

Most Popular

Education

An Idea for Student Loans: Get Rid of Them

Here is a three-part plan for something practical the federal government could do to relieve college-loan debt. Step 1: The federal government should stop making college loans itself and cease guaranteeing any such loans. Step 2: It should prohibit educational lending by federally regulated financial institutions ... Read More
White House

The Problem with the Mueller Report

So much for collusion. The media conversation has now officially moved on from the obsession of the last two years to obstruction of justice. That’s because the first volume of the voluminous Mueller report, the half devoted to what was supposed to be the underlying crime of a Trump conspiracy with Russia, ... Read More
White House

MoveOn.GOP?

Some of you will be familiar with a lefty, partisan Democratic organization called MoveOn, formerly MoveOn.Org. It was founded during an investigation into President Bill Clinton’s shenanigans (which were not, Democratic mythology notwithstanding, strictly sexual in nature) and argued that it was time for the ... Read More
Sports

Screw York Yankees

You are dead to me. You are a collection of Fredos. The cock has crowed, you pathetic sniveling jerks. The team I have rooted for since 1965, when I first visited the House that Ruth Built, where I hawked peanuts and ice cream a lifetime ago, watched countless games (Guidry striking out 18!), has gotten so ... Read More