By BROOKE WANSER
The Williamson County Democrats want a public forum between U.S. Congressional and state house candidates before the general election on November 6.
Justin Kanew, a Democrat, faces Sen. Mark Green, a Republican, for Congressman Marsha Blackburn’s seat in District 7, which she has vacated after 16 years in office to run for U.S. Senate.
In the District 61 state house race, Republican Brandon Ogles will face Democrat Rebecca Purington to fill Rep. Charles Sargent’s seat. Sargent, a powerful influence in the house, is retiring after 22 years representing of representing Williamson County.
Williamson County Democratic Chair Holly McCall addressed an open letter to county Republican Party Chair Debbie Deaver on Wednesday, asking for a co-hosted forum between all four candidates.
“Both seats have competitive races,” wrote McCall. “There’s been great change in Williamson County since the prior representatives in these positions were elected and I’m sure we can agree both parties would benefit from having an open opportunity for our candidates to state their positions.”
McCall asked Deaver for a date prior to the early voting period, a public location, division of cost, and a mutually agreed upon moderator and questions.
“There’s a lot of talk at all levels about how divided our country is these days,” McCall wrote in closing. “This is one way we can work together to be less divisive in our home county and to get to know one another as women working to improve our community.”
McCall has asked that the Republican Party respond to the request by Monday, September 17.
Deaver responded to the Home Page’s inquiry by pointing to Green’s availability at public events in the district, saying he typically answers audience questions.
“I’ve never heard him once speak negatively of his opponent. On the other hand, Mr. Kanew has resorted to divisive rhetoric, name-calling, and constantly attacks Dr. Green,” Deaver wrote. “Why would a statesman like Dr. Green want to debate him?”
Read more about each candidate here:
U.S. Congress District 7
State house District 61