Two third-party presidential candidates were arrested at the presidential debate in St. Louis when they tried to serve the debate commission with a show cause order.

Michael Badnarik of the Libertarian Party and David Cobb of the Green Party were protesting their exclusion from the debate between President Bush and Democratic Party nominee John Kerry.

Just as the debate began, the two candidates purposely crossed a police barricade and were arrested.

The debate took place at Washington University. The campus was alive with protesters and backers of both major-party candidates.

Protesters had no direct path to the school’s athletic complex, which was converted into a red-white-and-blue television studio for the 90-minute debate between Bush and his Democratic rival.

Cobb said his purpose was “to expose the undemocratic nature of these debates, this election and our government. These are not debates, these are infomercials.”

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