Debates help Hillary, not Bernie, so why did he agree?
With her poll numbers cratering, Hillary Clinton and her team have evidently caved to the reality that the thin debate schedule designed to hide her from the public eye and let her coast to the Democrat nomination is actually, as Kemberlee noted earlier this month, hurting her and her campaign.
As a result, the Clinton team and the Sanders team have agreed to four more debates this campaign season, a decision the DNC still has to approve (and likely will).
Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders’ campaigns have agreed in principle to attend four more debates, starting with a proposed New Hampshire event next week, a Clinton campaign aide confirmed Saturday.
The schedule is still subject to approval from the Democratic National Committee, which has not publicly weighed in on the campaigns’ requests to add four events — one in February, one in March, one in April, and one in May — since Sanders proposed it this week.
I don’t really understand why Sanders keeps doing these things to help Clinton (remember his dismissal of her email scandal during one debate?), but he does.
The final negotiations have yet to be ironed out, but the move comes after days of wrangling in public and behind the scenes, as both candidates sought to pressure each other on the topic of adding debates.
BuzzFeed News first reported the development on Saturday.
Sanders, Martin O’Malley, and Democratic activists had long made an issue of the previously scant debate schedule — just six events, and only four before Iowa and New Hampshire vote; trailing in New Hampshire, Clinton tried to push Sanders into agreeing to the event there after the New Hampshire Union Leader newspaper and MSNBC earlier this week announced an unsanctioned event would be held there.
Sanders responded by proposing the additional debates, which now seem likely to occur if the DNC signs on. The committee would have to waive its exclusivity clause that precludes candidates from appearing in unsanctioned debates and bars them from joining the official events if they do.
It looks like we’ll have four additional Democrat debates to endure (or ignore).