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Department of Lame Excuses

Paul Gosar has shown himself to be eager to debate Ann Kirkpatrick, except when it comes to actually debating her.

You may remember that after Gosar won his primary, Kirkpatrick challenged him to five debates. A bit over ambitious to be sure, but as of this morning that number has been reduced to zero. Gosar has cancelled the one debate that was scheduled for tomorrow. Gosar has previously bugged out of joint appearances with Kirpatrick before the Arizona Republic editorial board and the Arizona Business and Professional Women, leaving their only joint appearance a cattle call at a “Tea Party” forum in Prescott that included write-in US Senate candidate Ian Gilyeat.

Gosar had agreed to the place and time of the debate in late September.

So, what is the reason for this reticence? “Six hours of wasted driving,” according to his campaign manager.

Gosar’s home is in Flagstaff and his campaign is headquartered in Prescott, both two hours away. Although Phoenix isn’t in the district, it considerably closer than some rather sizeable communities in the district, such as Casa Grande and Safford. A lot of driving is one of the things you sign up for when you run in CD 1. It should be noted that Gosar and his campaign presumably knew this when they agreed to this particular debate last month. It also should be noted that “six hours of wasted driving” was no obstacle when they wanted to do a photo-op with John Boehner.

What it comes down to is this: Gosar has a lot of positions on things like corporate tax cuts and social security that can get him the 30% or so he needed to win a Republican primary, but he darned sure doesn’t want them challenged in front of a more skeptical audience.

5 Comments

  1. Tyler M wrote:

    Since the same left-wing garbage argument was used to try and show that Ruth McClung dropped out of Monday’s never-scheduled debate, I don’t buy it now either.

    And just to remind everybody, the Cook Political Report just moved AZ-7 to a “toss-up” rating today.

    No wonder, Grijalva is running so scared.

    And if that argument that McClung was hiding from debating Grijalva, then I guess that we can just pretend that she’s a figment of our imaginations tonight when she has another debate beat-down of Grijalva. (Although, since she wouldn’t actually be there, it’d just be in our imaginations, right?)

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at 3:25 pm | Permalink
  2. Tom Prezelski wrote:

    Given the size, demographics, and shape of the district, and the fact that it more or less flanks the Maricopa Conurbation on 3 sides, is it possible that a Phoenix location is actually more convenient to most of CD-1 voters than some of its larger population centers? I know that, politically it looks bad to locate outside the District, but it seems that a location in any of the cities that you mentioned would necessarily exclude the participation of a large portion, if not most, of the constituency.

    I am not throwing this out there to defend the Congresswoman or attack her challenger, but just to think out loud of the generally unwieldy nature of the district. The logistics of campaigning in, or representing, such a geographic monster are quite daunting. This is a problem that we as a state have to take seriously next year as we address the issue of redistricting and the increasing concentration of Arizona’s population in Maricopa and Pinal Counties.

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at 3:31 pm | Permalink
  3. Tyler M wrote:

    Redistricting is a game played by both political parties. There is no logic to it – other than how can we screw our opponents.

    But here’s some food for thought, I am almost for repealing the law that limits the size of the House of Representatives to 435 people. When the Constitution was written, congressmen on average represented around 30,000 people each. Today, it’s closer to an average of 750,000 voters per congressman. That takes away the entire concept of being represented at all. I’m not sure exactly how they should do it or what the actual number should be, but for real representation we need to have representatives closer to the people.

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at 4:01 pm | Permalink
  4. Tyler M wrote:

    And Tom-

    My point was that it could be more difficult to gerrymander districts or have districts that are terribly drawn to make it tough to represent one’s constituents if we had more districts to begin with.

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at 4:03 pm | Permalink
  5. dude wrote:

    I’m right there with you, Tyler M, HOW DARE this blog post accusations about things that are arguably true?!?! Does this author have any decency at all, to write such terrible things about our precious Republican/Teabagger candidates that actually happened?!?!

    This blog post is a far greater affront to the dignity of our center-right political discourse than agreeing to a debate and then bugging out at the last second is!!!!

    Thursday, October 21, 2010 at 7:41 am | Permalink

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  1. [...] yes, that would be her opponent, Paul Gosar. His reason for canceling their one scheduled debate? It’s too far of a drive. Funny, WCF staff member Bonnie drove from Prescott to Phoenix the [...]