PHOENIX, AZ – The Arizona Clean Elections Commission (CEC) and Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake blasted Arizona PBS Wednesday for granting Secretary of State Katie Hobbs an undeserved one-on-one interview.
The CEC set up a one-on-one interview for Lake with Arizona PBS that was supposed to take place Wednesday instead of a debate because Hobbs refused to share the stage with her. When CEC officials learned that Arizona PBS circumvented their decision not to give Hobbs an interview in an identical format, the CEC postponed Lake’s event, noting it will find a partner other than PBS for her interview. In a release, the entity stated:
This decision is disappointing, especially following the multiple attempts on behalf of all the partners involved in producing this year’s General Election debates, to organize a traditional gubernatorial debate between the two candidates.
As a matter of state law and under the direction of its commissioners, Clean Elections proceeded with its obligation to arrange a Q & A interview for candidates who agreed to debate but whose opponent elected not to participate, which is how the Q & A with candidate Kari Lake scheduled for tonight on Arizona PBS came to fruition.
Given today’s events, and the need to obtain additional information regarding the last-minute developments, the Commission will postpone tonight’s Q & A on Arizona PBS and will identify a new venue, partner, and date when the interview will be broadcast.
— AZ Clean Elections (@AZCCEC) October 12, 2022
The CEC added that PBS “broke from [their] shared practice.”
After the news came out, Lake held a last-minute press conference outside of Arizona PBS at Arizona State University’s (ASU) Walter Kronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications, where she ripped Hobbs, the university, and PBS.
“Unfortunately, I’m running against a coward who’s afraid to stand on the debate stage and talk about what she wants to do for Arizona,” said Lake. “And unfortunately, PBS and ASU have done a backroom deal with that coward to give her airtime that she does not deserve.”
“I need to remind people that it is we, the taxpayers, who own PBS and who own ASU. This is not the DNC that owns this, and what’s going on here is absolutely wrong,” she added.
As the CEC voted not to give Hobbs a one-on-one interview, Breitbart News asked Lake if she thought the Democrat’s deal against the CEC’s vote made her an election denier.
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) October 13, 2022
“I never thought of it that way. I never thought of it that way,” said Lake with a smile. “I do know that she’s a coward and she’s afraid that her racist past is going to come out and she doesn’t have a response to it.