The candidates for the 59th House District have engaged in a bit of a debate concerning, well, debates.
Sid Mathias (R-Buffalo Grove), who last month challenged Carol Sente (D-Vernon Hills) to face him in three public debates, wrote Wednesday on his Facebook page that the events have yet to be scheduled.
“I want to stand on stage with my opponent so that we could answer questions about our positions and what we believe to be the path forward for Illinois and the communities in the 59th District,” Mathias wrote. “Unfortunately, it seems my opponent would rather hide behind false attacks on my record and misleading mailers sent by her leader Speaker Mike Madigan.”
“We have sent several rounds of potential dates to the Sente campaign yet all we receive back are excuses as to why those dates will not work,” Arlen Gould, his campaign spokesman, added on the page.
Sente, who said last month that she, too, wanted to meet Mathias for public debates, responded Thursday through a news release that accused Mathias of “playing games in order to score last minute political points.”
“It’s clear that Mathias and his handlers are more interested in playing games than in having a real debate on the issues local voters are concerned about,” Sente said in the statement. “When I walk door to door to speak with voters, they tell me they want state government to reform itself and put local residents first.”
“My opponent and I have very different outlooks on key government reforms and I think we should debate issues that are on voters’ minds like pensions, public safety and women’s health,” she added.
Meanwhile, Gould said that Sente’s camp is stalling “so that they do not have to stand on stage and answer for Sente’s record of raising property taxes.”
The two have already met at six forums, Sente said, including a GLMV Chamber of Commerce breakfast in September and at a forum at Advocate Condell earlier this month.
As of Thursday, their final joint appearance was scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Oct. 15 at B’nai Jehoshua Beth Elohim, 1201 Lake-Cook Road, Deerfield. The forum will include candidates for local congressional, senate and house district races.