NY1 senior vice president Steve Paulus has responded (Associated Press, 8/15/06) that while $500,000 "seems like a lot of money" to many, "there are 5.5 million registered Democrats in New York. All Tasini would need is for each one to send him a dollar. Right now, with the money he's raised, he does not represent the party he claims to represent."
Moreover, as an antiwar candidate challenging Clinton's pro-war record, Tasini would appear to represent the Democratic Party even better than Clinton on that central issue: A recent poll showed that 78 percent of Democrats want candidates who oppose the Iraq War (Zogby, 8/9/06).
According to the AP report, Paulus argued that NY1's coverage of Tasini far exceeded that from other media outlets. But debates among all candidates are valued in democratic elections for good reasons: They bring out discussions on issues that often get short-changed in mainstream media interviews and carefully planned campaign speeches; they increase public interest in elections; and they increase voter turnout. NY1 should stop playing gatekeeper and let the public decide if Tasini represents them or not.
NY1, Director of Politics
NY1, Senior Vice President