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Viewer Spotlight: Why Scripps News hasn't aired the GOP debates

Viewers called the Scripps News Viewer Hotline asking us why we haven't been carrying the Republican presidential debates. Here's why:
Viewer Spotlight: Why Scripps News hasn't aired the GOP debates
Posted at 2:34 PM, Sep 29, 2023

Scripps News has heard from thousands of viewers since launching our toll-free hotline in the spring.  While we can't personally respond to each and every one of you, we do listen to every call, and this is our opportunity each week to address some of your thoughts about our coverage.

This week, the second Republican presidential debate made headlines and some of you told us you were disappointed that Scripps News hasn't been airing them.

Mike from Michigan said: "I do not have internet and I do not have cable TV. I'm a retiree and I have rabbit ears. I cannot see the Republican debate and your Scripps News is not covering it and no one else is other than Fox News, which I do not get. I want to know why you folks are not broadcasting the Republican debate. Please allow people like myself who do not have access to get decent news — like the Republican debate that's going on, that you guys evidently are not going to carry."

SEE MORE: GOP 2024 candidates attack Biden, Trump at second debate

Many of you tell us that we are your primary source for news and we take that responsibility very seriously. But we also hear your frustration.

Contractually, only official media partners — selected by the Republican National Committee in this case — are allowed to air the debates live and in full. It's a highly competitive process, with Fox News Media and Univision granted exclusive broadcast rights for this week's event. 

Put simply, what we can do is report on what the candidates say during the debates. 

Nonetheless, our political team is working hard to cover the issues that truly matter to you — and the candidates. We're aiming for in-depth one-on-one interviews with all the presidential candidates, including those that don't get airtime elsewhere.

Whether it's a sit-down interview or a stump speech at the Iowa State Fair, you can count on us to provide factual information — without the spin — so you can make an informed choice at the polls.

It's our mission to shine a light on all sides of humanity and the human experience during this political season and for many years to come. So, please keep the feedback coming!

Let us know how we’re doing — good or bad — anytime on our toll-free Scripps News Viewer Hotline at 1-833-4-SCRIPPS to lend your voice to the conversation.

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