My fave state PBS network, whose praises I have sung here many times, is trying to control the US Senate debate in ways a journalist should never do.
This, if a lawsuit filed by David Patterson, Libertarian candidate for the Senate, is correct. He charges KET changed the debate rules, between the spring primary, and the filing deadline for minority party candidates, to exclude the latter—specifically him. He seeks, in a federal court lawsuit, to have KET restrained from such rules and he be allowed to debate with Grimes and McConnell.
I have long believed this is not a role for journalists. If a person is legally qualified under state law, to run, the “media” whether KET or a local radio station (or even the League of Women Voters) MUST allow them all on their stages. Otherwise the public they serve is short-changed in “the marketplace of ideas.”
KET probably forgets Mitch’s party was once a minority party. It grew into a majority party by being heard. Yes, there is always a Fifi Rockefeller and that man in London who filed every four years because “my mother told me I was going to be President.” Yes, these can be the bane of KET and LWV and channel 27…but that “bane” is the lesser of several evils when compared with the good democracy can achieve from the exchange of ideas..and our history is sprinkled with issues championed by minority parties that became mainstream…not the least of which is the 40 hour work week, and an end to child labor.
I hope the U-S court will speedily hold for Mr. Patterson. And I hope between elections the KET board will instruct its staff to come up with no more of these anti-democratic ideas.
Now, let's get on with the debates..the full debates!
I'm just sayin'...