Bill Hudak Arranges 15 Debates; John Tierney Accepts Only 2
DANVERS, Mass.–“It’s either intentionally untrue, or Congressman John Tierney is as out of touch with his campaign staff as he is with his constituents,” commented Bill Hudak, candidate for U.S. Congress in the Massachusetts 6th Congressional District, when learning of the Congressman’s press release yesterday claiming Hudak is stalling on scheduling debates. “A simple call to any of the 13 frustrated debate hosts we have lined up would make crystal clear that it’s Mr. Tierney who is engaging in delay tactics and now refusing to debate,” Hudak challenged.
“The voters and I eagerly look forward to holding Mr. Tierney to his partisan, anti-business, anti-job, tax and spend, big-government record”
“For fifteen months, Congressman Tierney has hidden from his constituents and me and refused to engage in Town Hall meetings or debates,” Hudak said. “Even before the Republican Primary election, I accepted the Congressman’s claim he would engage in ‘vigorous debate,’ but it has since become clear that this was a promise he never intended to keep.”
“At 2:30 a.m. on February 15, the early morning of my Republican Primary victory, I faxed Congressman Tierney a letter and a proposed schedule of six debates that we had already lined up, and issued a press release so there would be no mistake we were ready. Still, the Congressman took more than a week, to September 22, to even put a team together to talk. While Mr. Tierney’s group was only ready with one debate suggestion, the Hudak campaign immediately lined up and accepted 15. Congressman Tierney has since dodged them all, before issuing a press release yesterday notifying me for the first time that he’s willing to engage,” Hudak said.
“Let’s make this very clear for the Voters: I am, and always have been, ready to debate every single day until this election, in open sessions, on radio, television, live in auditoriums, and in Town Hall venues all over the district, and in any reasonable format which allows voters to learn about and contrast our positions on the issues. The only thing stopping that is Mr. Tierney’s refusal,” Hudak said.
The Hudak campaign has lined up and has accepted thirteen specific debates which Mr. Tierney has so far refused:
(1) Salem State University Mainstage Theater, October 11, 7:00 p.m., moderated by Dan Mulcare and Ryan Chamberlain;
(2) WBZ-TV, Channel 4, airing District-wide, moderated by Dan Rea, before October 12;
(3) Essex South Medical Society, October 13, (a health forum including both candidates), Peabody Marriott;
(4) October 19, 8:00 p.m., Rupert A. Nock Middle School Auditorium, Newburyport (and to air live on Channel 10), moderated by Mary Anne Clancy;
(5) Gordon College Auditorium, moderated by Tim Sherrat, available most days in October;
(6) Merrimack College Auditorium, (two venue options), moderated by Harry Wessel;
(7) – (13) Radio Debates (on short notice), with each of the following radio personalities: Todd Feinburg (WRKO), Charley Manning (WRKO), Howie Carr (WRKO), Michael Graham (WTKK), Jay Severin (WTKK), Jeff Katz (WXKS), and Jamie Atkinson (WCCM).
“Before September 22, Fox 25 News independently invited us to participate in a 10-minute debate as part of its Congressional Debate Series, which it scheduled for October 7 at 7:00 p.m. While I immediately accepted, I was lead to believe Mr. Tierney wouldn’t bother to show up, so his apparent acceptance in his recent press release was a surprise to me,” Hudak commented. “And it was my team who initiated discussions with The Salem News (Nelson Benton) to sponsor a debate in conjunction with the Jewish Journal. That debate has been scheduled for October 14 at the new Beverly Cable TV studios, which The Salem News didn’t even confirm until after Tierney’s press statement yesterday,” said Hudak.
“So, in truth, until his press release, Mr. Tierney only proposed one debate, in a small lecture hall seating only 50 supporters for each side at St. Mary’s High School in Lynn,” Hudak continued, “and while we are happy to accept, Mr. Tierney has not answered basic questions whether there would be television or audio-visual capability at that site so other interested voters could watch, and he continues to refuse any debates outside of a few miles from his home,” he concluded.
“What is most curious is that Mr. Tierney chose to issue his press release suddenly, without responding to us or the hosts involved, on the heels of polling data indicating he is in trouble. Until then, he had more stalls than any equestrian facility in Hamilton or Beverly Farms,” quipped Hudak.
“The voters and I eagerly look forward to holding Mr. Tierney to his partisan, anti-business, anti-job, tax and spend, big-government record,” Hudak said. “Mr. Tierney certainly had no problem this week hurrying to adjourn Congress without extending the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, which businesses and individuals here so desperately need to create jobs and get this economy moving. Voters will certainly be interested in hearing why he was in such a rush to save his own job, rather than creating jobs in his District.”
“So, unless he is making it up just to deceive the voters when he says in his press release, ‘Voters deserve the chance to hear directly from the candidates,’ Congressman Tierney should accept these debates immediately, and then keep his word and show up,” Hudak concluded.