Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus has threatened to pull NBC and CNN's access to the 2016 Republican primary debates unless those companies pull their respective projects related to Hillary Clinton.
In open letters to the leadership of NBC Universal and CNN International, Priebus expressed his "deep disappointment" over those networks' decisions to produce films "promoting former Secretary Hillary Clinton ahead of her likely candidacy for the Democratic nomination for president in 2016."
Should the networks fail to pull their films by the RNC's Summer meeting on August 14, Priebus writes, he will "seek a binding vote of the RNC stating that the committee will neither partner with you in 2016 primary debates nor sanction primary debates which you sponsor."
"As an American company you have every right to air programming of your choice. But as American citizens, certainly you recognize why many are astounded by your actions, which appear to be a major network's thinly-veiled attempt at putting a thumb on the scales of the 2016 election."
NBC News spokesperson Erika Masonhall responded by reminding Priebus that "NBC News is completely independent of NBC Entertainment and has no involvement in this project."
CNN spokesperson Allison Gollust has also responded by recommending that the RNC actually wait until the documentary is finished before passing judgment on it. Gollust also said that if the RNC followed through with its threat, "we would find it curious, as limiting their debate participation seems to be the ultimate disservice to voters."
More likely, limiting participation is the actual intent, with this just being the flimsy justification for it.
At the very least, choosing to get a stick up his butt about two programs that haven't even been produced yet do not demonstrate confidence in the RNC's own 2016 ambitions. If anything, this will be taken by Clinton's supporters as an endorsement.