Scozzafava on Debate-Ducking ‘Crime’

ALBANY—Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava just held a conference call to rag on her opponents in a special Congressional election.

Scozzafava said it was a “crime” that Bill Owens and Doug Hoffman, the Democratic and Conservative party nominees against her, are not going to a debate planned tonight at News10Now in Syracuse.

“I just have a concern that they really don’t know the issues. They know the issues maybe in Washington-speak, but they don’t understand the daily dilemmas and the issues that both communities and individuals face. And to me, I think that is a crime,” Scozzazfava said.

Jon Boughtin, a spokesman for Owens, said that he Owens is in Plattsburgh this morning and “we’re just not able to attend.”

“We’ve been working to get these scheduled and are glad to have two on the books,” Boughtin said, noting Owens will participate in a debate sponsored by North Country Public Radio on Oct. 28 and another sponsored by WSYR on Oct. 29th.

Rob Ryan, a spokesman for Hoffman, committed only to the WSYR debate.

“The North Country Public Radio debate is the perfect place for Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava and Bill Owens to battle it out over who is the most liberal person in this race,” Ryan said.

Jude Seymour was pretty damning in his analysis of Hoffman’s debate posture. Based on my conversations with all three candidates, Scozzafava is the most loquacious. Hoffman, whose voice doesn’t appear in his campaign ads, is probably the least.