The Matt Doheny campaign hammered Doug Hoffman Thursday for allegedly ducking requests to debate Doheny in the western portion of the district. Hoffman, who now lives in Saranac Lake, has agreed to two debates, one in Plattsburgh and another in Saranac Lake. Doheny resides in Watertown.
I have yet to call the Hoffman camp about this...
And the release -- a really fun one, too:
Statement from Alison Power, spokesperson, Doheny for Congress Campaign:
“On Monday August 24, the Young Republican clubs of Lewis and Jefferson Counties invited Matt Doheny and Doug Hoffman to participate in a debate on August 31, at the Italian American Club in Watertown. We accepted. Doug Hoffman, through his campaign manager Patrick Gerhart, declined the invitation: ‘Unfortunately, Doug will not be able to make that date do (sic) to a previous commitment.‘
The clubs offered to change the date and/or the time and were told on Monday that the Hoffman campaign would “look into it.” It is our understanding that the Young Republicans have not to date heard anything more from the Hoffman camp.
The outright dismissal of local activist Republicans and, by extension, voters across the 23rd Congressional District is shocking but to us, not surprising.
Our campaign manager has been virtually ignored in his requests to the Hoffman campaign to coordinate dates and venues. Lip service from Mr. Hoffman’s surrogates has been given to all requests for debates, except two: one, on September 1, sponsored by UNYTEA, the group endorsing Mr. Hoffman, and a second, on September 7, hosted by area media in Mr. Hoffman’s own backyard of Saranac Lake. We are grateful to the individuals who have worked to make those debates happen and eager to participate in them.
But there is a 23rd District west of Essex County. Voters across the district deserve to see these two Republican candidates speak for themselves before the September 14th primary.
Since Mr. Hoffman’s primary spokesperson continues to make patently false statements such as this one in Monday’s Plattsburgh Press Republican – “The Hoffman campaign is looking forward to debates with Matt Doheny.” – we are asking for comments and truth from the candidate himself.
We publicly ask Mr. Hoffman to:
· * State what his prior commitment is on August 31
· * Offer another date prior to September 14 for a debate to be hosted by the Jefferson and Lewis counties Young Republicans clubs. Matt will clear his calendar to accommodate a date suitable for Mr. Hoffman.
Mr. Hoffman has been quoted as saying that he is "absolutely" willing to debate Matt Doheny, to “get the real issues on the table and the real me on the table and hopefully the real Matt on the table," he said. The “real” Matt Doheny has been out among the people in all 11 counties of this Congressional district for the past nine months. We’re looking forward to hearing from the “real” Doug Hoffman."
Okay, okay, full disclosure here. WNBZ is largely responsible for the September 7 debate in Saranac Lake -- "Mr. Hoffman's backyard." It was organized by the station in concert with the Adirondack Daily Enterprise. I don't think Alison is accusing us of bias. The Doheny Campaign has remained extremely available and responsive to us.
That said; God I love campaign season..