OH-10: Palmer (D) Issues Debate Challenge to Kucinich (D)
At a press conference this morning, Rosemary Palmer (D-Cleveland) challenged Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Cleveland) to participate in five debates:
Palmer proposed to focus each debate on a particular issue area including jobs and the economy, Iraq, national security and VA issues, and energy policy and the environment. “I have formally submitted this challenge to Mr. Kucinich’s office. I eagerly await his response, and frankly expect him, as a democratically elected official, to accept the challenge and appreciate the opportunity to address the people he claims to represent,” Palmer said.
Palmer criticized Congressman Kucinich for being largely absent while his district continues to endure troubling economic and social difficulty. She cited the incumbent Congressman’s recent trip to Disney World that coincided with the release of a US Census Bureau report which once again ranked the City of Cleveland as among the poorest cities in America. “While he goes to Disney World and wishes upon a star to be president, the needs of his district go unattended. The poverty report is just one example,” Palmer said.
Kucinich has complained about being excluded from the limelight of the presidential campaign. Following reports that his presidential primary opponents were conspiring to limit his exposure at debate appearances, Mr. Kucinich was quoted as saying “Imperial candidates are as repugnant to the American people and to our democracy as an imperial president.” In light of her newly issued challenge, Palmer countered, “Now that this challenge has been issued, we shall soon know if we have an imperial and repugnant Congressman”.
In response to my questions after her prepared statement, Palmer said that she would take up the issue of participation by other candidates (such as Barbara Ferris (D)) at such time as Kucinich agrees to the debates, and said that her differences with Kucinich on the issues to be debated have more to do with approach than substance.