Cruz: GOP Primary Debate Moderator ‘Should Be Someone Who Intends to Vote in the Republican Primary’

Thursday on “The Hugh Hewitt Show,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) sounded off on the Republican National Committee, avoiding major television networks if presidential primary debates are not reformed and requiring moderators to be more “center-right journalists.”

Cruz “emphatically” agreed with the need to have the Presidential Debate Commission reformed or done away with, arguing the moderator of future GOP presidential primaries needs to be “someone who intends to vote in the Republican primary.”

[Relevant portion of the interview begins around the 16:52 mark]

“David Bossie, who is on the RNC and is a member of the committee, the chair of the committee dealing with debates for 2024, both primary and general election, was my guest on Friday. He said on that show that the networks have to be decoupled from the Republican debates, that those debates have to be run by people like me who are center-right journalists who ask questions of which the Republican primary electorate is interested. And there are others – Guy Benson, Mary Katharine Ham, Ben Shapiro. You name it. There are lots of us. Although, of course, I should probably be the host,” host Hewitt noted.

“Do you agree with Bossie about the primary debates?” he asked. “No networks, they can cover them, they can carry them, but we get to pick the hosts and the people asking the questions. And B) do you agree with Bossie that the Presidential Debate Commission has either got to be top to bottom reformed or done away with because they are in the pockets of Democrats?”

“Absolutely,” Cruz replied. “Emphatically agree. This is something I’ve been calling for, for years. And there’s a very simple rule that makes a lot of sense and would dramatically change these debates, which is that I think anybody moderating a Republican primary debate in the presidential race should be somebody who intends to vote in the Republican primary. That is a mild, simple step. Right now, the status quo, let’s take the last election, 100% of the people asking questions of the Democrats in their primaries, 100% of those people voted in the Democratic primary. They’re all liberal Democrats. You had liberal Democrats asking Democrats questions. That’s actually quite helpful.”

“Now you’re guessing that, though. You don’t know that for sure,” Hewitt clarified.

“I don’t know that for sure, but I know that they’re all wildly left,” Cruz responded. “I know George Stephanopoulos was a senior aide in the Clinton White House, and has been a Democrat since he was in short shorts. So, did I pull their voting records? No. But I know the people, and they’re all liberal Democrats. Here’s the maddening thing. On the Republican side, that was very close to the case as well.”

Follow Trent Baker on Twitter @MagnifiTrent

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