March 7, 2018

Tommy Battle ‘accepts’ Gov. Kay Ivey invitation for debate

March 7, 2018

Debates may be coming soon in Alabama’s gubernatorial campaigns.

Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, responding to a comment Gov. Kay Ivey made to the Associated Press last week that she would be happy to take part in debates, said he would take her up on the offer.

Battle’s campaign issued a press release Wednesday morning, saying he has “accepted Gov. Ivey’s invitation to debates across Alabama.”

Ivey campaign spokesperson Brent Buchanan told The AP on Feb. 28 that Ivey is “happy to discuss her record” in a debate.

Battle said he wants to have debates with Ivey in each of the state’s seven congressional district before the June 5 primary.

“It is vital that voters have as many opportunities to hear candidates debate the issues and share their vision and plans for the state,” Battle said in a statement. “Simply doing one debate is not enough. We must have a debate in all seven congressional districts. Alabamians deserve that.”

Battle spokesman Nick Lough said that the campaign has not had any discussions with Ivey’s campaign about the debates.

“My track record over the last 10 years speaks for itself,” Battle said. “Gov. Ivey has been in state government for 30 years. Where has her leadership gotten us? She keeps saying she had three hours to prepare for governor. No, she had three decades. I look forward to debating her across the state.”

Another Republican gubernatorial candidate, Scott Dawson, said in a statement Wednesday afternoon that he would also be interested in a debate with Ivey.

“Of course we need to have debates across the state and I’m glad to hear the governor and Mayor Battle are both willing to bring their ideas for the future of Alabama before the people!” Dawson said in the statement. “I’m ready to present a compelling contrast: We’ve been electing politicians who talk big and play the same game for decades. We have the same problems we had 40 years ago and we’re still ranked near the bottom in just about everything. It’s time to try something drastically different.”

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