Christie, Ramaswamy Claim RNC Threatened To Ban Them From Next GOP Debate
Chris Christie, former governor of New Jersey and 2024 Republican presidential candidate, from left, Former Vice President Mike Pence, 2024 Republican presidential candidate, Ron DeSantis, governor of Florida and 2024 Republican presidential candidate, and Vivek Ramaswamy, chairman and co-founder of Strive Asset Management and 2024 Republican presidential candidate, during the Republican primary presidential debate hosted by Fox News in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, US, on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2023. Republican presidential contenders are facing off in their first debate of the primary season, minus frontrunner Donald Trump, who continues to lead his GOP rivals by a double-digit margin. Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Republican National Committee threatened to ban two 2024 presidential hopefuls — tech investor Vivek Ramaswamy and former Governor Chris Christie (R-NJ) — from the next GOP primary debate over a planned joint television appearance on Fox News.

Both Christie and Ramaswamy promoted the appearance via posts on X, saying that they were looking forward to the opportunity and the chance to share their views with voters.

Voters deserve to hear from the candidates, and unlike others, I’m not afraid to show up. Tomorrow, I’m sitting down with @VivekGRamaswamy and @BretBaier on Special Report for an in-depth discussion. Tune in at 6:00 PM ET. This is going to be fun,” Christie said.

Ramaswamy agreed, adding, “The GOP needs more actual argument on substance, not fake one-liners. I agreed to spar with @ChrisChristie tomorrow for a full hour on Fox at 6pm with @BretBaier.”

But as both candidates lamented on Tuesday, according to the RNC, that joint appearance — and the verbal sparring that was likely to result — constituted a violation of the candidates’ pledge to only participate in debates that were sanctioned by the party.

Christie unloaded on the RNC over the decision in a lengthy post on X, saying that banning such an exchange deprived the public of better access to the candidates and more information about their individual policy positions going into the primary elections.

Voters need more information not less. Our Party needs more debates and in-depth discussions not less. This is common sense and the bedrock of our Republic. When the RNC stops conversations between candidates from happening that is real cause for concern.

One of the main things that @VivekGRamaswamy and I agree on is the right of the American public to fully hear and understand what each candidate believes and with as little filter as possible. I appreciate @VivekGRamaswamy‘s willingness to engage in that conversation with me.

It is very disappointing that we were threatened with exclusion from the Miami debate and future debates for trying to have a more complete dialogue with each other and the voters. Every campaign was offered that opportunity by Fox News and they have now been effectively banned by the RNC. I am always up for those discussions – it’s a shame the RNC and @realDonaldTrump aren’t.

Ramaswamy shared similar sentiments in a post of his own, adding that the RNC’s “sanctioned” debates seemed designed to prop up certain candidates who were favored by “the establishment” — and the end result was that the voters would be denied the chance to see all the information and make a fair choice.

Last week’s RNC debate was a disgrace, and I’m starting to believe that was by design. This is what a brokered and rigged nomination process looks like.

I disagree like hell with @GovChristie, but when they asked me to face off with him, I said I’d be a man and do it – before the RNC intervened to cut it off. Instead of allowing open dialogue and the airing of ideas to give primary voters a real choice, the Establishment would rather cut backroom deals and offer up phony debates, including candidates with no viable path and questions that no voter would ever ask.

The Establishment was hellbent on taking down Trump. Now they’re hellbent on propping up their favored puppets. We won’t let them get away with it. It’s pathetic that the Super PAC puppet masters have now ‘summoned’ their favored Establishment puppets to broker a path to defeating Trump instead of allowing GOP voters to make a real choice on their own by hearing directly from candidates. Republican voters deserve better than this broken process.

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