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MSNBC's Ari Melber calls out Tom Perez, DNC for changing debate rules to help Bloomberg: 'It's not fair'

MSNBC's Ari Melber calls out Tom Perez, DNC for changing debate rules to help Bloomberg: 'It's not fair'

Feb 14, 2020

Washington (USA) Feb 14: MSNBC anchor Ari Melber called out the Democratic National Committee (DNC) as well as its chairman Tom Perez for changing its debate rules that could pave the way for former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to land a spot on the debate stage.
The DNC sparked controversy last month after it announced that it would no longer require its candidates to meet a donor threshold, which along with polling benchmarks were required for 2020 Democrats to meet in order to have a podium. But since Bloomberg has been self-funding his campaign, he was considered ineligible to participate despite his rise in the polls- that is until the DNC changed the rules.
After pointing out Perez's explanation of the donor rule last year, which was to empower "grassroots" movements for more unknown candidates, and his defense of the debate rules after they were criticized by former 2020 candidate Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J, Melber asked his viewers if it's "fair" for the DNC to change the rules "in the middle of the game."
"No," Melber answered the question. "It's not fair to change the rules in the middle. That would be true if it was the government changing the voting laws in the middle or either political party or any political party in the middle of a primary. And I think that's obvious from a position of fairness."
The "Beat" anchor argued that it's a "larger democracy question," pointing to criticisms made by billionaire Democratic donor Tom Steyer and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, both who aren't qualified for the upcoming debate but slammed the rule change since it allegedly allows Bloomberg to "buy" his way onto the debate stage. Bloomberg is just one poll short from qualifying for next week's debate.
"The DNC made debate rules and stood by them even as it helped potentially eliminate some of the top Democratic candidates. ... The DNC said those rules were fair because they tested grassroots support, then the DNC changed the rules midstream that can only add one particular candidate to the debates," Melber summarized before knocking the DNC's defense of the rule change.
Melber then posed the same fairness question to Perez and pointed out the chairman's conflicting stances on the debate rules.
"We are living through a time when our democracy is being tested. No party is immune from scrutiny and vetting for fairness. And as for Democratic Party Chairman Perez, the question is simple: Is it fair and transparent to change the rules midstream? No. Just ask Tom Perez," Melber concluded before playing a clip of the chairman in January saying, "We made the rules, they were very transparent, they're very inclusive, and we can't change the rules midstream because there's a candidate I wish were on but didn't make the debate stage."
Source: Fox News