Fred Karger For President - South Carolina Debate

TO:  Mrs. Karen Floyd, Chair, South Carolina Republican Party
        Mr. Joel Sawyer, Executive Director, South Carolina Republican Party
        Mr. Rupert Murdoch, Chairman and CEO, News Corporation
        Mr. Roger Ailes, President, Fox News Channel
DATE:  April 27, 2011

RE:   South Carolina Debate


First, thank you all very much for my invitation to the May 5, 2011 South Carolina Republican Presidential Debate in Greenville.  I was honored to be invited, but your criteria were apparently designed to keep me off of the stage at the Peace Center next Thursday night.
I would like to take issue with two of your five requirements:

  • You state that in order to be in the South Carolina debate, “one must have garnered at least an average of 1% in five national polls based on most recent polling.”
  • You state that one “must register a presidential exploratory committee or have announced a formal campaign for president."
Telephone Polling

Michael Clemente, senior vice president of Fox News Network, said in the Los Angeles Times on April 25, 2011 that, “Because the field is forming so late this cycle, there are not as many polls as there were at this stage in previous cycles.”

A random sample of national polls show the difficulty pollsters are having in the current Republican primary cycle.  Each poll includes a wide array of different names, many of whom have not indicated the slightest interest in running for President in 2012.  Poll results are skewed dramatically, and many candidates and potential candidates are often left off these “traditional polls” completely. 

Buddy Roemer and I have been left off nearly every national poll.   Neither of us meets your requirement of “garnering 1% in five national polls,” because he and I have not been in five national polls.  Yet Buddy Roemer is scheduled to be in Thursday’s debate, and I am not.

Digital and Straw Polling

I have, however, been included in numerous online and straw polls.  The reach of these polls is far greater, they are not limited to a small sample of landline participants, they include more younger people and overall better reflect voter opinion. 

I won the St. Anselm New Hampshire Straw Poll on March 31, 2011.  Voters from eight different states participated.  New Hampshire’s WMUR TV reported on my win over Mitt Romney, Donald Trump, Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum:  CLICK HERE

Below are polls that have included me, two of which I won:

  1. White House 2012 Poll April 18, 2011             Fred Karger: 2%
  2. Huffington Post Poll  April 15, 2011                 Fred Karger: 12%* (3rd of 17)
  3. Huffington Post Poll April 1, 2011                    Fred Karger 16%* (2nd of 17)
  4. St Anselm College Straw Poll March 31, 2011   Fred Karger: 25%
  5. SodaHead Opinions  March 12, 2011               Fred Karger: 78%
                                                                   *estimated percentages
If you pay a filing fee, you become a Candidate

According to the Federal Election Commission, an individual may conduct a variety of testing-the-waters activities in the Exploratory Committee phase.  Certain activities, however, indicate that an individual has decided to become a candidate. For example, the exemption does not apply if the individual: Seeks ballot access. 11 CFR 100.72(b) and 100.131(b), which is the case with the five or more participants that you have included in your May 5, 2011 debate.

Candidates with Exploratory Committees Cannot Seek Ballot Access

One of the criteria for the South Carolina debate is that participants must form an exploratory committee or a presidential campaign and file with the Federal Election Commission.  One of the other criteria is to register with the South Carolina Republican Party to be on the ballot in South Carolina, which includes paying a $25,000 filing fee.

The FEC considers an individual to be in the exploratory phase until he or she has filed as a candidate or has conducted the activity of a candidate.  One of the activities that demonstrate to the FEC that an individual has become a candidate is that he "Seek(s) Ballot Access."  Federal Election Law 11 CFR 100.72(b) clearly defines this as: "The individual has taken action to qualify for the ballot under State law."  

By making debate participants file the paperwork and pay the associated fee to gain ballot access in South Carolina, the FEC would consider these debate participants no longer in the exploratory phase, but candidates for a federal election.  Therefore, before paying their filing fee to the South Carolina Republican Party, all debate participants would need to immediately file a statement of candidacy with the FEC.

Buddy Roemer

Already, one invited debate participant who you have announced will participate in the debate next Thursday has begun fundraising to pay the $25,000 filing fee.  An April 22, 2011 email to supporters from the official exploratory committee of Buddy Roemer says:
"At this time I have an urgent task for you. There is a presidential forum scheduled for May 5th in South Carolina to be aired on Fox News. To be on the ballot in South Carolina and included in the forum, it requires a fee of $25,000. We need your immediate help to raise $25,000."

I am the only invited debate participant that has formally filed with the FEC as a candidate for president. Therefore, I should be able to seek access to the South Carolina Republican Primary ballot and be in the dabate.
One week ago I met with Joel Sawyer in the SCGOP Headquarters in Columbia.  As the only declared candidate for President who was invited to the May 5, 2011 debate, I offered to write out a check for $25,000 to file for the South Carolina Primary and be in the debate.  I was refused, but that offer remains on the table. 

Fred about to offer to pay the $25,000 filing fee to be in the South Carolina GOP Debate when he met with Executive Director Joel Sawyer in his office.  The SCGOP won't let Fred in!

The contradictory criteria for the May 5, 2011 South Carolina debate invites scrutiny, because of what appears to be the arbitrary way in which the SCGOP and Fox News includes participants to its debate.

Best regards,
Fred Karger
cc: Distribution

April 22, 2011

Gay GOP candidate seeks voice in Greenville debate

Fred Karger so far doesn't meet polling threshold

By Rudolph Bell
Staff Writer

An openly gay man seeking the Republican nomination for president wants to join the upcoming GOP debate in Greenville, but so far doesn't meet a requirement that participants average at least 1 percent in five national polls.

Fred Karger, a Californian who worked on numerous Republican campaigns before retiring as a political operative, said he is running in part to call the GOP back to the “big tent” concept of inclusiveness... (more)

For link to full story, Click Here

Issue #24.17: 04/27/2011 - 05/03/2011

Openly Gay, Jewish GOP White House Hopeful Campaigns in S.C.

by Corey Hutchins

Fred Karger is the openly gay, Jewish Republican presidential candidate that you’ve never heard of. And while he’s certainly not going to change the first four qualifiers after his name, he’s trying to do something about the last.

On April 22, Karger, who officially announced his candidacy on March 23, was campaigning in the Palmetto State and meeting with party officials about getting into the GOP debate set for May 5 in Greenville that’s being organized in part by Fox News... (more)

For link to full story, Click Here