Although a televised primetime gubernatorial debate fell through after Governor Corzine declined to participate, the event’s organizer hopes to reschedule it.
The head of the state’s League of Women Voters says that it may still be possible to find an alternate date for the debate, which was to air at 7pm on Tuesday, October 13 on the New York City and Philadelphia ABC affiliates. It was originally set to be held at The College of New Jersey.
The Corzine campaign said last week that the Governor’s schedule “does not allow for him to participate in all debates offered.”
“The candidates have known about the October 13 debate date since July. However, there is still a possibility of moving the date although we may not be able to offer a primetime television slot or The College of New Jersey venue,” said League of Women Voters Executive Director Anne Ruach Nicolas. “Although we may lose some of the viewing audience that a primetime debate would guarantee, we can still air a debate that can reach every household in New Jersey and will give voters the information they need to make an informed decision. We are still hopeful that the candidates will see this value to the voters and will work with us to schedule this debate.”
Corzine, Republican gubernatorial nominee Chris Christie and independent Christopher Daggett will participate in two televised debates sanctioned by the Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) in October. The League of Women Voters had applied to sponsor one of those two debates, but was beat out by partnerships that included NJN and My9.
Only Daggett agreed to take part in the League’s debate. Christie would not participate without Corzine.
Whether Corzine will accept any other dates remains to be seen.
“I can just tell you that we don’t comment on his upcoming schedule or hypotheticals moving forward,” said Corzine campaign spokeswoman Elisabeth Smith. “We’re committed to two ELEC debates, but beyond that there’s nothing we can comment on, because it’s all up in the air.”