Monday, September 08, 2008

Hulshof to Nixon: No Debate Pause on 9-11

Nixon Camp proposes "exclusively positive" first debate on the September 11th anniversary; Team Hulshof declines
The two will debate for the first time Thursday before the Missouri Press Association in Columbia on the 7th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.
Kenny Hulshof's campaign for Governor has apparently rejected an offer from Jay Nixon's campaign to hold an "exclusively positive" exchange when the two top candidates meet for their first debate Thursday in Columbia.

Nixon campaign manager Ken Morley e-mailed Hulshof campaign topper John Hancock Monday to request that both candidates agree to refrain from attacking each other Thursday during a debate being held by the Missouri Press Association. Thursday is the seventh anniversary of the September 11th attacks.

In an e-mail response from Hancock to Morley, the Hulshof camp appeared to decline the request.

"I am writing to propose that the Nixon and Hulshof campaigns honor this date by having an exclusively positive debate about the challenges facing Missouri and that each candidate refrains from direct or indirect references to his opponent, his opponent’s plans, and his opponent’s record. There will be three other opportunities for the two candidates to compare their records and ideas more directly, but we hope that you would agree to our proposal that on 9-11 both campaigns focus on their own ideas, rather than on their opponent," wrote Morley to Hancock in an exchange released to the media.

Hancock wrote back that the "Americans who gave their lives on September 11 - did so knowing that they are part of the most free and open nation that this world has ever known."

"Toward that end, we believe that the September 11 debate should honor those American values of openness and freedom," responded Hancock. "We look forward to a respectful and productive exchange on 9-11 before the Missouri Press Association. We are ever mindful that the great blessing of America on this world is built upon a free and open exchange of ideas," Hulshof's campaign manager added.

The Nixon campaign has said it will not air its television ads on September 11th. Presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama have said they will honor the day by appearing in New York City together.

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