Four weeks after the August 28th primaries, District 9 Tea Party candidate Vernon Parker is still too scared to face the voters or his opponent in a live public debate.
Parker has turned down or ignored debate requests from respected news organizations–including ABC 15, News 12, and the Arizona Republic—and yesterday his campaign sent out a press release falsely claiming to have agreed to participate in debates on Channel 12 and Channel 3. See below:
September 24, 2012
123 E Baseline Rd. D-202
Tempe, AZ 85283
Thank you for your letter on September 18 requesting a debate on television. Today I have informed KTVK and KPNX that I will participate in their proposed debates.
I sincerely look forward to debating you on all of the issues including education.
The truth is that neither Parker nor his campaign have agreed to debates on either KTVK (Channel 3) or KPNX (Channel 12). Instead, Parker agreed to one televised debate, to be taped in-studio and aired on October 18th on Channel 8, public television.
“With early voting starting in 16 days, Vernon Parker still can’t face his fear of the public or his opponent,” said Rodd McLeod, Sinema’s campaign manager. “At 3:17 pm yesterday, Parker’s campaign put out a press release claiming that he’d agreed to debates on Channel 12 and Channel 3, but then he chickened out quick, because just ten minutes later they put out a new release agreeing only to a debate on PBS. Those must have been the ten scariest minutes of Parker’s political career.
“Kyrsten Sinema is happy to debate on PBS, but everyone knows that ABC and NBC get some of the strongest ratings in the state, and Parker has blown off both of their offers–both of them to debate in front of a live audience. If Mr. Parker wants to represent the people in Congress, he needs to face the people and answer their questions.
“When a guy brags that he is ‘an assassin in a war against health care… I call myself a political SEAL, or a political Ranger’–Parker’s own words–he should have the integrity to face the voters and explain why he wants to gut Medicare. I guess Parker gets a kick out of comparing himself to the brave members of our armed forces, but he doesn’t have the courage to debate Kyrsten Sinema on TV in front of an audience.” [http://youtu.be/f7eeOeYr5a0?t=2m20s]