Meanwhile, the Blackburn campaign declined an invitation to a Sept. 13 Rhodes College debate but says it is in discussions for others. The Bredesen campaign agreed to four debates.
“I appreciate the hard work of the event’s organizers and volunteers. I look forward to a substantive discussion about the future of our state and our country as part of our general election debates.” Bredesen agreed to participate in this debate earlier this month, along with three other debates around the state. So far, Blackburn’s campaign has not agreed to any additional debates but is part of ongoing discussions about participating in more.
Citing her schedule, the Blackburn campaign declined an invitation to a debate sponsored by Rhodes College, The Commercial Appeal and WMC-TV in Memphis originally set for Sept. 13, according to the college.
In a statement, Bredesen campaign manager Bob Corney blasted Blackburn for not agreeing to more debates.
“In typical D.C. fashion and like the failed gubernatorial candidate Congressman Black, Congressman Blackburn is avoiding Tennessee voters. Each of the grand divisions in Tennessee deserves to hear about issues affecting their regions, starting with Memphis,” Corney said in an emailed statement Monday morning.
This year Tennesseans have a choice to do away with the Washington way and that’s why Phil Bredesen is applying for the job.” In a statement, Rhodes College President Marjorie Hass said she wished Blackburn would have accepted the invitation to debate at her school. “I’m disappointed voters in West Tennessee won’t have the chance to hear the candidates debate the issues important to our part of the state,” Hass said in an emailed statement.
“I’d like to thank Governor Bredesen for his willingness to come to Rhodes and participate in what would have been an influential forum.” Election day is Nov. 6. The last day to register to vote in the election is Oct. 9.