Debate Moderator Chris Wallace
Presidential debate moderators, such as C-SPAN’s Steve Scully, have been criticized for having political bias – but, neither objectivity nor lack of bias is one of the three criteria used by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) to select moderators.
Scully, who was selected to moderate the second presidential debate between Democrat Joe Biden and President Donald Trump, has come under scrutiny for having interned for Biden, attended a 2016 beach bash hosted by the former vice president, and worked on the communications staff of former liberal Senator Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.).
Regardless, according to the CPB’s website, the only three criteria used to consider selection of presidential debate moderators are knowledge, on-air experience and focus on the issues:
1. “Familiarity with the candidates and the major issues of the presidential campaign,”
2. “Extensive experience in live television broadcast news,” and
3. “An understanding that the debate should focus maximum time and attention on the candidates and their views.”
A requirement for the moderator to be objective and avoid bias in his comments and management of the debate is conspicuous in its absence:
“The CPD uses three criteria to select its moderators: a) familiarity with the candidates and the major issues of the presidential campaign; b) extensive experience in live television broadcast news; and c) an understanding that the debate should focus maximum time and attention on the candidates and their views.”
The moderator of the first presidential debate between Trump and Biden, Chris Wallace of Fox News, has been widely criticized for favoring Biden and even taking it upon himself to debate Trump.
“Chris Wallace is a disgrace,” Media Research Center President Brent Bozell declared on Twitter as the debate was taking place. “One softball after another to Biden. One spitball after another against Trump-and then Wallace argues against him!”
As CNSNews.com reported, at one point what was supposed to be a Trump-Biden debate, moderator Chris Wallace personally engaged President Trump in a debate on “climate change” that lasted for about 3 minutes and 45 seconds.