The GOP Presidential debate taking place on June 13th in New Hampshire and to be broadcast by CNN will not feature a candidate who was in the first debate, former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson.

In fact, Congressman Ron Paul will be the only bright spot on the dais that night. He will stand alongside enemies of medical marijuana Tim Pawlenty and Mitt Romney, along with 4 others. Invites were sent out to 6 other people, including Sarah Palin and Rudy Giuliani, who haven’t even announced running. Yet Gary Johnson can’t score an invite?

Since Ron Paul is going to be there, Johnson’s drug legalization views can’t be the reason for his snub, and his campaign says CNN didn’t give a reason. Since the CNN website gives a list of criteria for debate invites, I have to think Governor Johnson failed to get 2% in a certain poll; or he ticked off someone at CNN.

Some may think it doesn’t matter, but the vast majority of those watching the debates are going to be GOP primary voters. They can easily block Johnson and Paul, shutting down the dialogue that needs to take place about The War on Drugs.

It means new media like The 420 Times will have to work that much harder to get Gary Johnson and Ron Paul’s message out there. That’s the beauty of the Internet: the mainstream media no longer has a monopoly on information. It can be shared with anyone.

- Joe Klare

About The Author

Joe Klare has been writing about marijuana issues for the past 5 years online, in print and on air.

12 Responses

  1. Dave

    It’s too bad Johnson is excluded, but I think Ron Paul has a much better chance than Johnson at winning the GOP nomination this go around. They have very similar ideas, but Paul has the name recognition and momentum. Johnson might be more palatable, but being pro choice would make it difficult for him to win the GOP nomination, especially when you have another free market candidate running who is pro life.

  2. Adama Smitha

    The exclusion was done on purpose because Johnson would reaffirm everything Dr. Paul has said in past debates. Also Paul/Johnson would overshadow the hacks on that stage.

  3. enw

    i urge to people to consider johnson over paul, unless you agree with paul’s anti abortion anti gay state of mind. i care about pot legalization but not when its taking away other freedoms, in this case i would choose johnson.

  4. Jeremy

    Ron Paul is not anti-gay. I don’t know where you got that, he does not support discrimination against gays in any way, and his abortion stance is purely a constitutional one- the Federal Government has no business legislating laws allowing or banning abortion.

    They do not have the authority to regulate or define would-be violent crimes against a fetus. If it is to be considered illegal, that would be the grounds.

    Paul says the states should be the ones writing the statutes on abortion. What’s so wrong with that?

  5. bill gillingham

    I’m a big Paul supporter…

    Paul went through this last cycle – and it drove many of us nuts.

    One oddity to me is that Paul and Johnson aren’t being very supportive of each other. Johnson made a comment that, since he was excluded from the debate “What will be missing is the voice of those who hold an undiluted view of individual liberty…” – which to someone that is following both seems almost like a dig at Ron Paul.

    To me, I could understand such stringent rules if the field was very crowded – or it was very late in the game. But now? And to invite people that aren’t yet running?

    Did they include polls of announced candidates?

  6. RonTimeForChange

    About time Ron Paul gets included in the debate. It was a huge disappointment that he wasn’t included in the last election’s debates!

    I would love to see him put on these comedians back to their place…in showbiz.

    Ron Paul 2012! facebook.com/ronpaul

  7. joey

    What are you guys smoking? Gary Johnson isn’t being included (i think) because he did an AWFUL job in the last debate – he was stammering, sweating and couldn’t string 2 sentences together. He has no presence and conveys no kind of authority – it’s a waste to include him.

    No offense — it’s just an objective POV – i didn’t know about him before watching that last debate. He just came off sounding and looking really weak.

    Is romney going to this debate? cuz i wanna see if that piece of sh*t is still going to laugh at ron paul when he talks economy – seeing as paul’s ideas have proven right and romney’s ideas are biting him in the ass (romneycare in Mass.)

    Ron paul has been leading this charge since – well probably since he was elected to office – and only just now is the mainstream paying attention – i think that’s called being “ahead of your time” — that’s the kind of person you want in a leadership role….isn’t it?

    It didn’t fit barack obama – nor george bush – nor bill clinton – will our dumb ass voters stop looking for “obama money” handouts and vote for personal freedom and responsibility? I hope so.

  8. joey

    COINCIDENTALLY – i wrote that last comment at PRECISELY 4:20. and this is my first time seeing this website.

    Nice.

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