Douglass Challenges Hurt to Five Joint Appearances


    Gen. John Douglass is running for Congress in the 5th District to help Virginia families get a fair chance at a better future after serving our country on President Reagan’s National Security Council and then as President Clinton’s Assistant Secretary of the Navy, before going on to promote air and space policies that grow our economy by creating manufacturing jobs and keeping our skies safe.

    With less than four months left before voters head to the polls to pick their candidates for office, Congressional Challenger General John Douglass’s campaign issued an open challenge to incumbent Congressman Robert Hurt for five joint appearances, which include several historic invitations by non-partisan, non-profit organizations in the Fifth District. The challenge appeared in an acceptance letter for two debates hosted by news stations WSET and WVIR, sent earlier this morning.

    “When John Douglass unveils his plan to help Virginia families next week, he will stand ready to debate every point,” Campaign Manager Gary Ritterstein said in the letter. “So we are openly inviting Republican Congressman Robert Hurt to join him for five separate appearances that will give voters throughout the district the chance to make a more informed decision about who will best represent them in Congress.”

    In addition to having already accepted three invitations that will be broadcast in the Charlottesville and Danville media markets, the Douglass campaign is proposing two Lincoln-Douglass Style Town Halls in Warrenton and Farmville. This will allow voters in the newly added counties and the southeastern part of the district to see the candidates together. WSET and WVIR have offered debates, moderated by the Sorensen Institute’s Robert Gibson with a panel of local reporters, on September 6th and another date to be determined. The Senior Statesmen of Virginia has also offered a forum for both candidates on August 8th, hosted by WINA Radio’s Coy Barefoot.

    Democratic Senate candidate Tim Kaine and even Republican Senate candidate George Allen have shown the moral courage to accept a large number of joint appearances, with 8 debates already scheduled. Meanwhile, General Douglass has been barnstorming the district with more than 200 appearances since entering the race, talking with and listening to voters. But according to a Danville Register Bee article, featured on Hurt’s own website, “Hurt has visited a lot of businesses as opposed to having large town hall-type of meetings with constituents.” His most recent town hall event appears to have been held as far back as last December at Hampden-Sydney.

    While John Douglass spent his life serving our country, working his way up from a foster home to highest levels of military leadership, under Presidents Reagan and Clinton, Hurt has spent his career in politics voting with Republicans in Congress 94% of the time. As a result, he has gotten away with bankrolling his campaigns with hundreds of thousands of dollars from Corporate PAC’s, including Wall Street banks, insurance companies and lobbyists, at the expense of Fifth District families. He’s even taken more than $10,000 from one of the leading companies seeking to privatize social security.

    Voters deserve to get answers from their Corporate Congressman on the tough questions:

    • How could Hurt throw away a chance to support a common-sense, bi-partisan proposal last week to kick-start Virginia’s critical transportation projects and stop student loan rates from doubling?

    • Why would he pledge to protect deficit-funded tax subsidies for millionaires, corporations and Big Oil, but refuse to protect seniors and Veterans by twice voting for the Paul Ryan budget cuts?

    • What does he tell military families with loved ones in harm’s way when he votes to keep our troops in Afghanistan?

    • When Hurt admits it would be “impossible to balance the budget without deeply cutting” programs like Medicare and Social Security – what cuts is he proposing exactly?

    • How much danger does the proposed Coles Hill uranium mine have to pose to families and farmers before Hurt will break his financial ties to their investors?

    Fifth District constituents can help round out the Top Ten List of questions for Congressman Hurt by respectfully posting to his facebook page:

    The Douglass for Congress campaign looks forward to working with the Hurt campaign to iron out the details of these appearances in a way that ensures a full and fair discussion that addresses the concerns of Virginia families. Following the unveiling of his Virginia Families Plan, General Douglass will be making many more campaign stops to address voter questions and welcomes Congressman Hurt to join him, anytime or anywhere.

    For a full copy of the debate challenge letter click here:



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