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OK, so where are all our principled Democratic presidential candidates when we need them?

Today we learned that ABC News and its New Hampshire affiliate, WMUR-TV — once referred to here as WGOP — have on their own decided that some party-endorsed candidates will not be able to participate in the next New Hampshire primary debate.

I believe that this is a serious breach of the tradition in New Hampshire of giving all candidates a level playing field — and that means giving all party-sanctioned candidates the opportunity to participate in primary debates.

The nature of this decision is troubling at another level: who runs our political process? The voters and their political parties? Or the mass media, specifically television stations and networks?

I call upon all voters to protest this decision by calling the WMUR-TV newsroom at 1-800-257-5151. Perhaps this time it is not your candidate who is getting booted off the stage — but what about the next time?

More importantly, I am asking the front-runners in the New Hampshire Democratic primary — Hillary, Obama, Edwards — to show their support for fundamental fairness in the primary process by refusing to participate in the debate unless ABC News and WMUR-TV allow ALL CANDIDATES to debate.

New Hampshire’s Republicans already have taken a stand against FOX News which threatened to limit participation by GOP candidates.

Let’s see who the real American heroes are in this field of Democrats.