Today's Freedom Report podcast looks at the lawsuit filed by Governor Gary Johnson against the Commission on Presidential Debates. Johnson and attorney Bruce Fein are filing an anti-trust lawsuit, claiming that the CPD is in restraint of trade, and arguing that the debates are a monopoly.
From Johnson's Our America Initiative:
With the filing of our complaint, the CPD will finally be forced to reveal the secret agreements, the plans, and the plotting that the Republican and Democratic parties have used to monopolize the debates and keep voters from seeing that there really are alternatives to the worn-out, business-as-usual “major” party candidates.Our lawsuit makes the case that this monopoly is not only wrong, but illegal.
But Johnson's advisers (who included former Trump guru Roger Stone back in 2012) and campaign staff say he is unlikely to be the sacrificial victim for a quixotic Libertarian campaign unless the Libertarians are assured at least the possibility of being in the post-primary presidential debates. Hence Johnson's law suit.Estimated to run up $800,000 in legal bills, the suit has been put together by Reagan administration Constitutional lawyer Bruce Fein, whose work on opening up political debate includes getting rid of the Fairness Doctrine - an FCC policy which had the result of coercing broadcasters into presenting only two centrist viewpoints, liberal Democrats and Rockefeller, establishment, Republicans. Fein's Johnson suit will be an anti-trust suit, alleging that the Commission on Presidential Debates, populated and controlled by only establishment Democrat and Republican Party operatives, limits the candidates allowed to debate only to the nominees of those two parties - even if other candidates like Libertarians or Greens have managed the extremely difficult task of being on the majority of state ballots so they could earn enough Electoral College votes to win an election if voters knew they were running and considered them viable because they were presented in the same way on television and in the debates as the GOP and Democratic candidates. Fein further alleges that the Debate Commission is a business in restraint of trade, since the Republican and Democratic consultant class raise billions of dollars now to pay themselves during the campaign season, and raising the money is dependent on excluding independent competition for donor dollars.
So though most might still think it unlikely, Courts may be deciding within a year whether the Presidential Debates will for the first time include a Libertarian or a Green.