In typical establishment media fashion, the Associated Press has decided that the VA republican senate primary is over, and that you don’t need to hear from the candidates. You see, it’s really easy (lazy) to simply deem that only the well-known big-money candidates have a message worth hearing. In a message from prior RTP president and current senate candidate Jamie Radtke, we learned today that the AP is scheduling a debate with *only* democrat candidate Tim Kaine and republican candidate George Allen. This is in spite of the fact that the republican primary for candidate selection is about 9 months from now, and the primary season is only just beginning. We feel that allowing voters a chance to hear the candidates provides the best opportunity to make an informed decision for the election, but the AP doesn’t appear to agree.

At this early stage of the primary season, ALL candidates should be given a chance to be heard. While it is certainly AP’s right to conduct their debate with the particular candidates and in the manner that they select, we believe that it’s relatively unprecedented to be bypassing the primary race and jump right into a debate with the “chosen” candidates for the general election. Perhaps the AP knows about a primary election that we missed?

We encourage all Richmond Tea Party supporters that would like to hear from candidates OTHER than those the AP has pre-selected for you to contact the AP immediately to express your displeasure. We need to head off this “we know what’s best for you mentality” NOW, or the efforts for the media to limit your choices/information will only continue to increase. Call, fax, or email the AP right away!

AP Phone: 804-643-6646
AP Fax: 804-643-6223
AP Richmond Bureau Chief: dabernathy@ap.org

Virginia Capitol Correspondents Association: officers@vapress.org

For additional details, please see the information that the Radtke campaign shared via newsletter earlier today:

Virginia: The Mainstream Media Has Chosen Your Senate Candidates

Hi everyone,

Virginia voters: the Mainstream Media wants to choose your Senate candidates for you – and guess what? They picked Washington politicians.

The Virginia Associated Press (AP) Managing Editors and the Virginia Capitol Correspondents Association (VCCA) have decided to hold a general election debate in December between the Washington Establishment candidates Tim Kaine (former DNC chairman) and Senator George Allen, and the AP and VCCA wrote rules to exclude everyone but the Washington candidates:
• Candidates that average 15 percent or better in published, non-candidate primary polls; and,
• Have raised at least 20 percent as much money as their party’s frontrunner by the end of October
The AP and VCCA ignore head-to-head Senate polls, such as the July 27 PPP poll showing:

Tim Kaine: 47%
Jamie Radtke: 31%

This is well over the 15% threshold set by the AP and VCCA. This is a general election debate, so why wouldn’t they use general election poll numbers?

The AP and VCCA ignore the fact that, by scheduling a general election debate six months before the primary, the Mainstream Media is circumventing the electoral process and telling Virginians that your voices and votes are irrelevant.

By their logic, an AP / VCCA presidential debate in Virginia would include only Rick Perry, Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. The AP and VCCA would exclude Ron Paul (9.8%), Michele Bachmann (6.8%), Newt Gingrich (6.2%), Herman Cain (5.4%), Rick Santorum (1.8%) and Jon Huntsman (1.4%).

The AP and VCCA is using its Mainstream Media power to shut down conservative Virginians, saying: We will pick your Senate candidates.

Don’t let this collusion between Mainstream Media and the Washington Establishment take away your voice!

Please help. I need you to do three things right now:

1. Let the AP and the VCCA know what you think:
Associated Press Phone: 804-643-6646
Associated Press Fax: 804-643-6223
Associated Press Richmond Bureau Chief: dabernathy@ap.org

Virginia Capitol Correspondents Association: officers@vapress.org

2. Make a statement through a donation to my campaign. We only have ten days remaining until we report our third quarter fundraising results, and want to raise an additional $50,000; and,

3. Forward this email to all of your friends and ask them to do the same.

Thank you for all your support. Let’s show the Mainstream Media the power of the grassroots. Please act now!

Don’t let the AP decide what information you need to hear. Send an email or pick up the phone now!