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Bob Dole claims no Republicans on debate commission support Trump

The Hill logo The Hill 10/9/2020 Jordan Williams
Bob Dole wearing a suit and tie smiling and looking at the camera: Bob Dole claims no Republicans on debate commission support Trump © Greg Nash Bob Dole claims no Republicans on debate commission support Trump

Former GOP Sen. Bob Dole (Kan.) claimed on Twitter on Friday that none of the Republicans on the Commission on Presidential Debates support President Trump.

"The Commission on Presidential Debates is supposedly bipartisan w/ an equal number of Rs and Ds. I know all of the Republicans and most are friends of mine," Dole tweeted, saying he was concerned that none of them supported Trump. "A biased Debate Commission is unfair."

Dole's tweet comes as the president and his allies have repeatedly accused the commission, which describes itself as nonpartisan, of trying to assist Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. The claims arise as the commission has sought to make several changes to the upcoming presidential debates.

Members of the commission's board of directors include former GOP Sens. John Danforth (Mo.) and Olympia Snowe (Maine). All of the living former presidents serve as honorary co-chairs.

Most recently, Trump said Thursday that the commission's decision to make the Oct. 15 presidential debate a virtual event was a way to protect Biden. The decision was made amidst Trump's coronavirus diagnosis.

Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien, who also tested positive for COVID-19, also ripped the decision Thursday, calling it a "pathetic" effort to "rush to Joe Biden's defense."

The Trump campaign previously made these claims when the commission was looking into changes to impose more order after Trump repeatedly interrupted Biden and moderator Chris Wallace at the first debate. They accused the commission of considering Biden in these adjustments.

At the time, Stepien claimed that the commission cannot describe itself as nonpartisan because certain members of its leadership have contributed to Democrats or expressed criticism of Trump.

Senior Trump campaign aide Jason Miller had said making changes was "purely a move by the Biden camp and their allies in the CPD."

The Hill has reached out to the Biden campaign for comment.

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