Concerns Mount over Debate Moderator’s Connections to Barack Obama

Concerns are mounting over revelations that President Obama attended the 1991 wedding of tonight’s debate moderator, ABC’s Martha Raddatz, whose now ex-husband, Julius Genachowski, was a law school buddy of the president and a man whom Obama would later tap to head the Federal Communications Commission.

Martha Raddatz

The Daily Caller is reporting that ABC has confirmed that the president did indeed attend Raddatz’ nuptials. A guest at the wedding remembered that a man by the name of “Barry Obama” was among the guests at the reception.

Raddatz and Genachowski divorced in 1997.

However, Genachowski has continued to be friends with the president and aggressively fundraised for then-candidate Obama in 2008 as a bundler. He also served on the presidential transition team before winning his appointment to chair the FCC.

The president appears to be friends with other members of the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) as well. The group is responsible for choosing this year’s debate moderators with several personal friends and political supporters among its leaders.

When confronted about the selection of Raddatz in August,  CPD co-chair Mike McCurry said the Commission did not take Raddatz’s former marriage into account when they selected her.

“We selected the moderators based on their reputations for integrity and journalistic impartiality among other things,” McCurry told the DC. “What counts is the quality of their work, not who they may have been married to in the past.”

However, ABC has made matters worse by actively trying to conceal the connection between Raddatz and the Obama Administration.

” . . .(T)hings are further compounded by the fact that ABC News . . . has long known about this conflict of interest and did nothing about it. Even worse, the network has actively tried to prevent the public from learning of it,” reports Newsbuster‘s Matthew Sheffield.

It was only this past Monday night that ABC spokesman David Ford grudgingly confirmed that Obama did indeed attend Raddatz’s wedding and give her former husband the prestigious position he now occupies. But Ford called concerns over these connections “absurd.”

“Of course, if a Fox News employee hosting a presidential debate were to be exposed as having such a relationship with a Republican president, the story would be plastered all over the media and left-leaning journalists would be calling for him/her to be immediately replaced. Clearly this would be a good idea in this case as well,” Sheffield says.

As of this writing, Raddatz is still scheduled to moderate tonight’s debate between Congressman Paul Ryan and Vice President Joe Biden, which will take place at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky beginning at 9:00 p.m.

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One Response to “Concerns Mount over Debate Moderator’s Connections to Barack Obama

  1. I watched the debate, and Martha Raddatz appeared to show no bias. I did not know of the potential conflict of interest before I watched the debate, but I still would not have expected bias, because Julius Genachowski and Martha Raddatz are related no longer. Their divorce, I assume, severed any relationship they might have had.