Romney, Obama camps raise concerns about debate moderator Candy Crowley
By Daniel Strauss - 10/15/12 10:29 AM ET
The campaigns of President Obama and Mitt Romney have voiced concerns that Candy Crowley isn’t planning to abide by the terms that were set for the second presidential debate on Tuesday night.
Lawyers for the two camps have written to the Commission on Presidential Debates questioning whether Crowley intends to take a more active role during the town-hall event than the campaigns agreed to, according to Time.
Crowley, who is a host on CNN, has made comments recently that suggest she plans to aggressively question the candidates during the debate at Hofstra University in New York.
"Once the table is kind of set by the town-hall questioner, there is then time for me to say, ‘Hey, wait a second, what about X, Y, Z?' " Crowley said on Oct. 5.
That comment reportedly drew a letter of concern from the top attorneys for the Obama and Romney campaigns. The debate commission responded to the letter by saying it would talk with Crowley and “reconfirm her function,” according to Time.
A spokeswoman for Obama's campaign avoided questions Monday on whether the campaign had requested that Crowley ask no follow-up questions.
"I'm not going to get into the specifics of the negotiations," Obama campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters.
According to Time, the campaigns said they are worried that Crowley will do more than just push the candidates to answer the questions posed to them by the audience, which is the role prescribed in the pre-debate agreement that was signed by both campaigns.
The Time report notes Crowley was not party to the agreement reached by the campaigns.
Aside from moderating questions from the audience, Crowley's responsibilities at the debate include sifting through the audience queries and picking the ones that will be asked. The audience will be made up of likely voters selected by the polling organization Gallup.
CNN did not respond with a comment to Time magazine about the letter, and neither campaign immediately responded to The Hill's requests for comment.