Newsmax debate pushed back after Trump withdraws
December 16th, 2011
05:18 PM ET
11 years ago

Newsmax debate pushed back after Trump withdraws

(CNN) - With Donald Trump out as moderator, the conservative publication Newsmax announced Friday it was postponing their Republican primary debate to an undetermined date.

In a statement, the newsmagazine's Editorial Director Steve Coz said the candidates were wary of participating with Trump asking the questions.

"We spoke directly with all the major candidates and/or their campaigns over the past few weeks," Coz said in a statement. "They were extremely excited about connecting with Newsmax's huge conservative audience, but the candidates were concerned with Trump's involvement due to his stating that he was a potential third party candidate."

Trump announced Tuesday he was withdrawing as moderator of the debate, which was slated for Dec. 27. Only two candidates – former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum – agreed to participate.

Other candidates said they couldn't participate for a variety of reasons. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Texas Gov. Rick Perry both said their schedules wouldn't allow for another debate, citing the number of other events to which they had already committed.

Other candidates were more frank, questioning the seriousness of the event. Texas Rep. Ron Paul's campaign said the event would be "beneath the office of the Presidency."

Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman said the selection of Trump as moderator was "exactly what is wrong with politics. It's show business over substance."

Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, who had visited Trump four times over the course of her campaign, told conservative radio host Sean Hannity "it wasn't going to be a real debate. There was no point in it."

Trump said he withdrew from the event because he wasn't willing to forgo the chance to run for president himself.

"It is very important to me that the right Republican candidate be chosen to defeat the failed and very destructive Obama Administration, but if that Republican, in my opinion, is not the right candidate, I am not willing to give up my right to run as an Independent candidate," Trump said in a statement Tuesday.

Filed under: 2012 • Debate • Donald Trump
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. GI Joe

    Newsmax is just like Trump – lies, inuendoes and hot air.

    December 16, 2011 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  2. T'sah from Virginia

    What??? They could have still held the debate because there are nothing but GHOSTS or ZOMBIES anyway on the stage.

    Obama 2012

    December 16, 2011 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  3. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Trump as moderator was a dumb idea from the get go.... But I wish all these debates get cancelled. Just way too many of them. Pretty soon the Girl Scouts will be holding one instead of selling cookies. Enough already.

    December 16, 2011 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  4. Liz

    GAWD! Trump is done. What an idiot. A third party candidate? Who is he kidding?
    Nobody takes him seriously, which is why the candidates with credibility backed out.
    Yeah, I incude ol' Newtie in those with no credibility.
    Nobody cares, Donald. Get over yourself.

    December 16, 2011 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  5. Thomas

    Palin , Perry , Cain , Trump ,

    The last episode of survivor !


    December 16, 2011 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  6. Oldie in TampaBay

    I don't know which is MORE ridiculous ... FOX or TRUMP!? Tossup there! BOTH are IDIOTS.

    December 16, 2011 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  7. frag

    Postponed to an undetermined date? ha ha ha How about using the word "cancelled"? Donald, "your fired".

    December 17, 2011 03:23 am at 3:23 am |

    Desperate wingnuts will vote for Trump when FoxLies and Liemax tell them to. The want flavor of the week Newt but are stuck with Romney. The GOBP wingnut/teabagger trainwreck implosion continues full speed ahead.

    December 17, 2011 07:18 am at 7:18 am |