26 September, 2006

NY1 Accused Again Of Playing Censor Role As Spitzer, Faso Debate Tonight

The Ithica Journal, which was to have participated in the questioning, has ended its involvement in the gubenatorial debate tonight at Cornell.

The newspaper said NY1 rejected all three of the questions it proposed to ask of the candidates, so it has decided to sit out the faceoff between Eliot Spitzer and John Faso. The questions were solicited by the paper of its readers.

Here are the three questions the paper says were rejected, with the paper's understanding as to the reasons for rejection in brackets afterward:

1.) Thousands of New Yorkers continue to suffer from the 2001 terror attacks in NYC. Families and surviving victims have sought additional investigations on the attack that were never addressed by the 9/11 Commission Report. Do you accept the findings of that Commission, or are there areas of that investigation that still leave you with unanswered questions? Would you as governor act to open a state investigation to answer those questions? (irrelevant)

2.) As governor, what would you do to reform the state's mental health housing policies to assure an adequate supply of safe, affordable and adequately staffed housing with services for people with mental illnesses? (too narrow for a statewide audience)

3.) A bill will be proposed in the next legislative session titled "The Clean Money, Clean Elections Bill." This bill would create a new system in New York that provides "clean money" candidates with a fixed and equal amount of public financing for their political campaigns. If elected, will you support this bill? (redundant based on other panelists' anticipated questions)

You will recall NY1 came under some fire in the primary season for refusing to set up a debate between Sen. Hillary Clinton and her Democratic challenger Jonathan Tasini because Tasini had not raised enough money to be a viable candidate in the eyes of the cable news outfit.

Meanwhile, NY1 has a preview story on the debate. It's expecting fireworks from Faso. Sounds like they're trying to set the stage for flash over substance - not that TV news ever does that!!!

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