Dunlea Slams NY1, Spectrum for Exclusion from October 29 Comptroller Debate
Mark Dunlea, the Green Party candidate for State Comptroller, slammed Spectrum and NY1 for seeking to exclude him from their upcoming October 29th debate for State Comptroller candidates.
Dunlea said that Tom DiNapoli, the incumbent, should refuse to participate unless the debate is open up to all the candidates on the ballot. DiNapoli has told NY 1 that he wants the debate to include all the candidates. Bob Hardt, NY1’s political director, has repeatedly said on air he wants all debates with major parties.
Dunlea noted that unlike the other opponents to the present Comptroller, he has been an elected official and has been active with the state budget for more than 40 years. Dunlea’s involvement with the state budget process began when he was a co-founder of NYPIRG (New York Public Interest Research Group) in 1973. He has continued work on the state’s finances for 28 years with the Hunger Action Network of NYS and for the last 5 years with the Green Education and Legal Fund. Dunlea participated in the first Comptroller debate on October 9 on the Manhattan Neighborhood Network.
“The action by Spectrum and NY1 to exclude the Green Party, the 4th largest ballot-qualified party in New York, is a slap in the face to voters and democracy. The Green Party has already been complaining about NY1’s behavior this election cycle y, especially in contrast to their heavy air time for WFP. Spectrum’s hostility towards the Greens unfortunately is being repeated nationwide as major corporations increased their ownership of the media,” noted Dunlea.
NY1 has only had Howie Hawkins, the Green Party candidate for Governor, on once this election cycle. Hawkins finished third in the 2014 Gubernatorial election, pulling far more votes than the Working Families Party.
Dunlea did say that Liz Benjamin, host of Capitol Tonight on Spectrum, has a good track record in providing air time to Green Party candidates. Capitol Tonight will be airing a Congressional debate for the 21st District that includes Lynn Kahn, the Green Party candidate, the same night as the Comptroller debate.
The Green Party nationally has seen widespread problems this year in terms of access to debate.
“Spectrum is acting like a Pravda for the American two-party state. In America, Spectrum and its corporate media cohorts, faithfully propagate the line of the two government parties in the two-party system of corporate rule. The two government parties are presented as the only real options and the public is given the illusion of choice when both options are funded by primarily big corporate interests.,” added Howie Hawkins, the Green Party candidate for Governor.
The Green Party candidates earlier this year did call for the state to takeover Spectrum and turn it into a public broadband utility.