Independent media needs you. Join the Tyee.

The Hook: Political news, freshly caught

Greens cut from TV debate; Carr blames network 'wimps'

High profile Green Party candidate Adriane Carr responded with outrage to today’s decision by Canada’s broadcasters to deny leader Elizabeth May a spot in the televised leadership debates next month.

“I’m incensed,” Carr told The Tyee. “This has got to make Canadians angry.”

A consortium of Canadian networks that includes CBC/Radio-Canada, CTV, Global Television and TVA made the decision after three leading parties expressed resisted May's inclusion.

The New Democratic Party, the Conservative and Bloc Quebecois painted the Greens as a single issue party and questioned its ability to elect an MP. They also pointed to a deal between May and Liberal Party leader Stephane Dion to refrain from running candidates in each other’s riding.

The three parties said they would not participate in the debates – which take place on Oct. 1 and Oct. 2 – if May was given a spot. That threat ultimately carried the day.

"It became clear that if the Green party were included, there would be no leaders' debate," said a press release issued by the consortium.

Carr, who is running in a hotly contested four-way contest for Vancouver-Centre, described the behaviour of the three parties as “undemocratic.”

“They’re worried we’re going to poach their votes,” she said.

She also had harsh words for the network consortium, attacking the broadcasters for siding with the arguments of the opposition over the interests of free speech.

“The guys heading the parties are bullies,” she said. “But the consortium is full of wimps.”

In addition to securing the Green party’s wrath and sustaining criticism from across the country, the broadcasters will also likely face dismal ratings. They booked the English language debate head-to-head with a highly anticipated on-air showdown among the US Vice Presidential candidates. US Republican nominee and Alaska governor Sarah Palin is expected to draw high viewership on both sides of the border.

Though May had threatened legal recourse if she was denied a spot in the debates, Carr said she was unable to say what specific course of action would be taken. But she was certain the decision would be challenged.

“My belief is that you’ll see us in court," Carr said.

What have we missed? What do you think? We want to know. Comment below. Keep in mind:


  • Verify facts, debunk rumours
  • Add context and background
  • Spot typos and logical fallacies
  • Highlight reporting blind spots
  • Ignore trolls
  • Treat all with respect and curiosity
  • Connect with each other

Do not:

  • Use sexist, classist, racist or homophobic language
  • Libel or defame
  • Bully or troll
  • Troll patrol. Instead, flag suspect activity.
comments powered by Disqus