Radtke claims foul on debate snub

Republican Senate-nomination candidate Jamie Radtke is raising issue with criteria established by the Virginia Associated Press Managing Editors and the Virginia Capital Correspondents Association for a Senate debate scheduled for December.

Candidates must average 15 percent or better in published non-candidate polls and have raised at least 20 percent as much money as their party’s frontrunner by the end of October to qualify for the debate. It would appear that only Democrat Tim Kaine and Republican George Allen would qualify given those criteria.

“Virginia voters: The Mainstream Media wants to choose your Senate candidates for you – and guess what? They picked Washington politicians,” the Radtke campaign stated in an e-mail to supporters sent out on Tuesday afternoon.

The Radtke campaign noted the relatively strong showing of the Tea Party leader in a July 27 Public Policy Polling survey of Virginia voters that had Radtke at 31 percent in a head-to-head race with Kaine.

“This is well over the 15% threshold set by the AP and VCCA. This is a general election debate, so why wouldn’t they use general election poll numbers?” asked the campaign in its e-mail to supporters today.

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