McFadden set to skip record-setting fifth public debate

Investment banker hasn’t attended a single debate open to the public or press

Just when Minnesotans learned that investment banker Mike McFadden might actually show up for a candidate forum on April 1, state Sen. Julianne Ortman’s campaign revealed that McFadden would be skipping yet another public debate days before — his fifth absence so far — further solidifying his long record of hiding from voters and refusing to discuss the issues.

Days before McFadden finally comes clean with Minnesotans at a private organization’s candidate forum, he will skip his 5th public debate at the CD7 Republican Convention on March 29th. Ortman’s campaign manager tweeted late yesterday, “Wow! Just got word [McFadden] declines to attend the U. S.  Senate CD 7 debate at their convention.”

McFadden’s attendance at the Republican Jewish Coalition of Minnesota’s forum would break his nearly 10-month streak of only talking to donors willing to write him checks. It’s ironic that McFadden is taking this opportunity to speak out as his campaign co-chair Norm Coleman sits on the board of the Republican Jewish Coalition, the national organization.

McFadden has already refused to attend four public debates and literally ran away from a voter last month when he was asked a question. The last Republican Senate debate — the only debate McFadden has attended — was held in secret behind closed doors at the Freedom Club, an exclusive, $3,000 minimum members-only right wing group. It was not open to the public or media.

“Minnesotans should be suspicious of McFadden,” said DFL Communications Director Ellen M. Perrault. “First he sets the precedent of only taking a stand behind closed doors and now he’s participating in a debate held by an organization his campaign has intimate ties to? His behavior further reinforces the need for Republicans and the Freedom Club to release recordings from the secret debate.”