Merkley challenges Smith to eight debates

In a letter to Gordon Smith, Jeff Merkley today accepted debate invitations from five media outlets - and proposed three more debates.

Dear Senator Smith:

Oregonians are struggling with the price of gasoline and an economy that is running on empty. Our troops are returning from Iraq without proper health care, while skyrocketing health care costs trouble us all. Our nation is at a very critical point and democracy demands that we debate solutions to the serious challenges families face.

To that end, my campaign is accepting five debate proposals in Portland and Eugene and proposing additional debates in Bend, Medford, and Pendleton.

The eight debates are:

1. Debate sponsored by KGW NewsChannel 8 and The Oregonian at KGW studios in Portland during the final week of October.

2. Debate sponsored by KATU News and Oregon’s League of Minority Voters at Pacific University on October 5th at 5 p.m.

3. Debate sponsored by Oregon Business and Oregon Public Broadcasting at OPB Studios in early October.

4. Debate at the City Club of Portland on October 17th.

5. Debate sponsored by KEZI Channel 9 at KEZI studios in Eugene on October 9th at 7 p.m.

6. Debate in Pendleton that could be hosted by The East Oregonian and other local organizations.

7. Debate in Medford that could be hosted by The Medford Mail Tribune and other local organizations.

8. Debate in Bend that could be hosted by The Bend Bulletin and other local organizations.

Read the full letter.


  • verasoie (unverified)

    I can't wait to see them "debate" Smith's voting record, as mentioned in the new DSCC ad released today (hat tip to MyDD via Kari)

    On that note, how much can the DSCC help Merkley? Is there a cap, or can they do as many uncoordinated ads as they like?

    I wonder b/c as much as this ad is useful now, it will be especially critical come this fall and I'd like to think that the DSCC doesn't blow its wad this early in the campaign.

  • (Show?)

    how bout a debate on the steps of the state capitol?

  • JTT (unverified)

    Merkley should not have suggested the Bulletin...their editorial board is about as capable of unbaised moderating as Fox News.

  • (Show?)

    I'd bet you anything ole' Gordo will turn him down on the other three debates.

  • Adam L (unverified)

    Yippee Debates! The fun part of politics!

  • (Show?)

    I'd bet you anything ole' Gordo will turn him down on the other three debates.

    Well, he hasn't even accepted the first five yet, either.

  • Floyd (unverified)

    Thursday, July 24, 2008

    Not that it matters to all the Merkley fans, however, I am not at all comfortable with corporate media “sponsoring” debates. This is an obvious conflict of interest, and, I believe, one of the main reasons we remain mired in a two-party system always voting for the lesser of two evils.

    By the way, no reply from Merkley yet to my “Drug question?” In case you missed it, you can view it here.

    And, to refresh your memory of the Oregonian's phony 2004 “Unnecessary Epidemic” series, please read Willamette Week’s 2006 cover story, Meth Madness


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