CNN’s Peter Hamby reports that Republican party officials are working on “a new batch of rules aimed at streamlining a chaotic presidential nominating process” that would include limiting the number of televised debates in the next Presidential election:
One proposal being weighed by the RNC members would involve sanctioning a small handful of debates while penalizing candidates who participate in any nonsanctioned GOP debate by stripping them of one-third of their delegates to the national convention. There is also a “heavy appetite” to have a say over which journalists should be allowed to moderate the debates, said one Republican familiar with the ongoing discussions.
“There is a definitely a consensus for Reince [Priebus]’s objective to have less debates and have control over how and who we have run our debates, rather than just turning it over to X, Y or Z network and having a guy moderate who’s going to just dog you for two hours,” said the Republican, who requested anonymity to discuss the sensitive and not-yet-finalized rules changes.
There were 20 debates during the 2012 primaries: seven on CNN, five on Fox News, two on ABC News, one each on NBC, CBS, MSNBC, CNBC and Bloomberg, and one jointly hosted by NBC and MSNBC.