Patrick Murphy, Allen West clash over debate scheduling

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Democratic candidate Patrick Murphy has offered to debate Rep. Allen West once on WPTV’s “To The Point” Sunday program and again in a St. Lucie County League of Women Voters forum on Oct. 5, reports Jonathan Mattise of  TCPalm.

Murphy, a Democrat living in Jupiter, responded Friday to a West letter calling for four debates before the November election for the 18th District U.S. House of Representatives seat. Instead of the four head-to-heads West called for — two on the economy, one on energy and one on national defense — Murphy’s campaign invited West to two debates.

The “To The Point” debate, which would land on a “mutually selected Sunday morning,” would feature voter-submitted questions. The St. Lucie County League of Women Voters would moderate the Oct. 5 debate.

The West campaign has not yet responded to Murphy’s counteroffer.

Murphy’s letter slams West for launching “some of the most outrageous verbal attacks ever heard in modern politics.”

“You have spent far too much of your term in Congress distracting from the real issues, using hyperbole and partisan attacks, and not nearly enough time offering solutions to the critical issues facing the people you were elected to represent,” Murphy wrote in the letter.

West’s initial letter, which was sent Tuesday, pressed Murphy to lay out his policy stances.

“Since announcing your intention to run for the United States Congress, your campaign has been replete with negative attacks, but you have yet to offer specific ideas or solutions,” West wrote in the letter. “It is time for you to address the issues.”

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