Feb 1 2000

Three’s a Crowd, Says Debate Commission

Media should insist on broad participation

On January 6, the bipartisan Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) announced the criteria that presidential candidates will have to meet in order to appear in next October’s nationally televised debates. As usual, to be included, a candidate must meet the Constitution’s eligibility requirements, and must be on the ballot in enough states to have a mathematical chance of winning. But the commission has added a third criterion: Candidates must command the support of at least 15 percent of respondents in national opinion polls approximately one week before each debate. The commission says its goal in devising these rules is to […]

Feb 1 2000

Terrorism Stories: Three Cases, Two Standards

On December 3, 1999, two white, U.S.-born men, Kevin Ray Patterson and Charles Dennis Kiles were arrested for allegedly plotting to blow up a TV tower, an electrical station and propane storage tanks in California, supposedly in hopes of sparking a Y2K-related militia uprising. Police say they found bomb-making equipment and illegal firearms in their homes. The names of the suspects appear in 96 newspaper articles in the Nexis computer database (as of January 6). On December 14, an Arab man, Algerian national Ahmed Ressam, was arrested while attempting to cross into the U.S. from Canada, reportedly carrying urea fertilizer, […]