Republican candidates aren't just ticked off about how the debates are being presented, they're planning what Politico refers to as a "revolt" against the networks—and the Republican National Committee. Representatives from most of the campaigns plan to meet Sunday evening to plot strategy on how to gain control of the format. The initiative is spearheaded by the Trump, Carson, Jindal, and Graham campaigns, but representatives from the Rubio, Fiorina, Huckabee, Paul, and Santorum campaigns are on board and plan to attend the meeting, according to Politico. CNN confirms the development, adding that the Bush campaign is a maybe.
"We need a change of format," Carson said Thursday. "Debates are supposed to be to get to know the candidates, what is behind them. What it has turned into is a gotcha." In addition to the leading candidates' concerns about format, the Jindal and Graham campaigns are reportedly upset that the networks—with the blessing of the RNC—have been allowed to dictate who gets to share the main stage, relegating them to undercard status. “I think the campaigns have a number of concerns and they have a right to talk about that amongst themselves,” says Graham's campaign manager. The idea is to “find out what works best for us as a group.”