Libertarian Candidate Files Complaint Against WCVB

Libertarian Congressional candidate Daniel Fishman has been left out of a debate, and he's not backing down.

Libertarian Congressional candidate Daniel Fishman has filed a complaint against WCVB with the Federal Elections Commission.

WCVB is planning a 6th District congressional candidates' debate on Thursday, and Fishman was not invited because he did not meet their criteria: A candidate must have a certain number of staff members, a daily campaign schedule, communicate on a regular basis with news media, garner at least 10 percent in two recent independent polls and have campaign contributions of at least $50,000.

The debate will include U.S. Rep. John Tierney (D-Salem) and Republican challenger Richard Tisei, the two major party candidates seeking the seat in the Sixth Congressional District, which includes Hamilton and Wenham. 

Fishman's complaint alleges that WCVB's criteria are in violation of FEC guidelines.

First, the FEC mandates that a station use "pre-established criteria" to determine who is allowed to participate. In his complaint, Fishman says that the debate criteria were announced two weeks before the debate, which he says does not qualify as pre-established.

Fishman also takes issue with the station's requirement that a candidate receive more at least 10 percent in two independent polls since there have not been two independent polls in which Fishman was included and garnered less than 10 percent. He also alleges that the $50,000 requirement is discriminatory against candidates who do not take corporate contributions.

What do you think? Should Fishman be allowed to participate in the WCVB debate? Leave a comment below and discuss.

Bill Bowler October 24, 2012 at 04:00 PM
I find it ironic that the supposed libertarian candidate is trying to make use of bureaucratic rules enacted by the government. The station should be free to invite who they want.


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