The Menendez – Kean Debates In June
Frankly, I think Kean's best chance is to focus on (4), make the election a referendum on Corzine's tax and spend budget and focus on the fact that Menendez has never met a tax hike that he didn't like. Let surrogates bring up the Menendez dirty laundry. Also, my feeling is the more voters see the two, the more they will dislike Menendez. He is nasty and unlikable, a younger Cuban version of Frank Lautenberg. Debates will help Kean, but not when they're in June which is the current plan.Menendez’ positions and record should be enough to turn nearly everyone off, but too few voters are familiar with the facts. On the other hand, we hadn’t realized Mendez has a personality to match his record- nasty and unlikable. Roberto has been following New Jersey politics far longer than we have and we are inclined to believe him when he says Menendez is a JUNIOR version of Frank Lautenberg.
Reading Roberto's post reminds us of a Fred Snowflack blog post, Why now? of June 22:
Tom Kean and Bob Menendez are scheduled to debate Monday night. A debate in late June for a race that is going to be decided in November? Why?A commenter wrote:
Fred, you are right. This is a joke to have a debate so early. Menendez apparently feels he needs to do something because Jr. is only 4 points down.SnowFlack responded with:
As always, people sound a bit looney when they are too partisan. The above poster is far off-base. The debate scheduling has nothing to do Menendez needing to do something. He didn't schedule the debate.You’d think Fred Snowflack, the editorial page editor of the Daily Record, would follow politics a bit more closely and refrain from calling people names. Because you see, it was Menendez that specifically called for a June debate. The Hall Institute of Public Policy contacted Menendez and Kean about participating in a virtual debate on its web site. This led Menendez to challenge Kean to a live debate on TV before the end of June.
From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
The Kean and Menendez campaigns have agreed to participate, but Menendez campaign director Steve Dimicco issued a caveat.And from the Atlantic City Press:
"An online forum is no substitute for live, televised, real-time debates between the two major-party candidates," he said. "We issue a challenge today for Tom Kean Jr., should he become his party's nominee, to meet Sen. Menendez in a one-hour debate before a statewide television audience."
The Menendez campaign also has accepted the institute's invitation, but a spokesman challenged Kean to engage before the end of June in a live, one-hour television debate — if both Menendez and Kean win the June 6 primary election.