From Bill Bolling for Lt. Governor campaign....
"QUIT AND RUN" WAGNER QUITS DEBATE, RUNS FROM BOLLING
RICHMOND - Matt Wells, Bolling campaign manager, today issued the following statement:
"Earlier today, the campaign of Jody Wagner released a statement asserting that Lieutenant Governor Bolling had threatened to "pull out" of a debate that had been scheduled for September 24th before the Prince William Committee of 100. Nothing could be further from the truth.
"The Bolling campaign's participation in this debate has always been predicated on our ability to develop mutually agreed-upon rules and debate format. However, and despite our best efforts, no final rules have been agreed to and for the Wagner campaign to claim otherwise is simply false.
"During our discussions with the Prince William Committee of 100 we have made significant compromises on several issues, including the moderator of the debate, the rules of the debate, the format of the debate, etc. However, we have insisted on the inclusion of a "no use" agreement in the rules. Unfortunately, and despite our best efforts, the Wagner campaign has refused to agree to a "no use" agreement, and the debate cannot proceed without such an agreement.
"No use agreements are standard for debates of this nature. They protect both sides from having clips and portions of the debate taken out of context. For example, the recent gubernatorial debate in Fairfax operated under a mutually acceptable no-use agreement.
"In addition, and at the request of the debate organizers, we have taken great care to keep our discussions about debate rules private and out of the media. Unfortunately, the Wagner campaign has refused to discuss the rules of this debate in good faith, as is evidenced by their recent press release; and has now issued a factually inaccurate and misleading statement in an effort to try and score some cheap political points in advance of the debate. Given these developments, it is clear that the debate cannot move forward as scheduled on September 24th and we have advised the debate organizers of that fact.
"Lieutenant Governor Bolling was looking forward to the opportunity to debate Ms. Wagner and discuss the important issues currently facing Virginia, and we remain hopeful that this will occur at some point in the future.
"We greatly appreciate the hard work that the Prince William Committee of 100 has put into this event, and we are very disappointed that the debate will not proceed as scheduled. However, it is obvious to that the Wagner campaign would rather debate about debates than actually hold one."