WDT scribe Jude Seymour asks the question in this blog post, "will the candidates ever debate ?"
The answer is no, why should they ?
As a veteran trial lawyer, Democrat Bill Owens would seem a natural, but he is thought to be in a position to win with 40% of the vote and his spiffy TV spots and fundraisers with Presidents past and present are a better strategy.
Republican Diedre Scozzafava is already well known and has years of legislative experience to hone her speaking skills. But she has been testy about queries about her record and may not want to face unscripted questions.
Conservative Doug Hoffman is running a good campaign masterminded by State Chair Michael Long. He is running on the conservative brand, not on his own charisma, so he is content to avoid debates.
There will continue to be "scheduling problems."
Then there is the fourth participant. The media.
While salivating over political ad revenue in slow times, the mandarins of local media openly say to me they don't want debates and they don't want to do anything on live television.
What ? That's what you do for a living, guys and gals. Remember when moderating a debate was high honor for the anchoring class and being chosen for the panel was like getting a press award for your four-part sweeps piece on teenage obesity ?
Like most people in Watertown, I have been comfortable with a city native named McHugh representing us in Congress. DeDe Scozzafava is well known and provides much of that same comfort level.
Now there is a real chance our next member of Congress comes from a place almost four hours drive from Public Square. That's why I am going to take the time to go to a Dem dinner on Sunday to at least meet Bill Owens. If he wins, our City needs to at least have made an outreach to him. The same is true of Mr. Hoffman, and I would hope there is a chance to meet him as well.
If the media can't get a live debate on the air, could they please publish the schedules of the candidates so interested citizens can take their own time to go meet them ?
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