Former President Donald Trump has announced that he may refuse to participate in the Republican primary debates after the Republican National Committee (RNC) made decisions about the debates without communicating with him.
Without Trump, the debates would likely have abysmal ratings — which makes it especially strange that the clear frontrunner was not consulted at all before the RNC planned the debates, including choosing to hold one at a location connected to the far-left Washington Post.
In a post on Truth Social, the former president cited a lack of communication — stating that the RNC had not confirmed with his campaign about him attending a debate televised on Fox News.
RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel announced the first debate in a statement on April 12, revealing that the event — which will take place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin — will be streamed on the free speech video platform Rumble, and will be partnered with the formerly conservative news network Fox News. This decision is especially controversial considering many conservatives have begun boycotting Fox News over their decision to fire their most popular host, Tucker Carlson, who was one of the last non-establishment anchors on the network.
Why would Fox News get rid of their most popular anchor and the number one news show in all of the United States?
What do you think really happened here?https://t.co/Hf77Xb7UMm
— Luke Rudkowski (@Lukewearechange) April 24, 2023
“I am excited to announce that our first debate in Milwaukee will be in partnership with Fox News, Young America’s Foundation, and Rumble,” McDaniel’s statement read.
RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel announces Fox News will host the first 2024 Republican presidential primary debate in August in Milwaukee.
“We’re also gonna partner with some pretty exciting partners. For the first time ever, we’re gonna live stream on Rumble.” pic.twitter.com/6e8DZ8m0Bo
— The Recount (@therecount) April 12, 2023
Meanwhile, Trump may not even show up for these debates — and has questioned the RNC’s decision to partner with Fox News, calling the network “hostile” toward himself and the MAGA movement.
“I see that everybody is talking about the Republican Debates, but nobody got my approval, or the approval of the Trump Campaign, before announcing them,” he wrote on Truth Social. “When you’re leading by seemingly insurmountable numbers, and you have hostile Networks with angry, TRUMP & MAGA hating anchors asking the ‘questions,’ why subject yourself to being libeled and abused?”
“Also, the Second Debate is being held at the Reagan Library, the Chairman of which is, amazingly, Fred Ryan, Publisher of The Washington Post. NO!” Trump added.
Trump is right! The debates will be totally RIGGED against Trump.
Trump haters Neil Cavuto and Brett Baer “moderating” the first debate? What a joke! They’d be just as bad as Chris Wallace was! pic.twitter.com/zogF83g0d4
— Alex Bruesewitz 🇺🇸 (@alexbruesewitz) April 25, 2023
Trump declining to participate in the debate will almost certainly lead to low ratings, as the same outcome occurred during a 2016 debate he skipped. According to Breitbart News, “Trump declined to attend the January 28, 2016, debate after an infamous quarrel with moderator and former Fox News host Megyn Kelly. That debate saw a drop in viewership, compared to six previously scheduled debates, according to final Nielsen numbers.”