Independent gubernatorial candidate Anthony Pollina is taking the Rasmussen poll and running with it.
He is trying to get Gov. Jim Douglas to agree to a debate, town-meeting-style, between just the two of them. No Gaye Symington.
His news release on it reads:
"With only a few weeks left before the election and the Democratic
candidate slipping badly in the polls I am asking the Governor to meet in a town
meeting style debate so we can talk directly with voters about the issues facing
Vermont. The Governor can pick the date to meet his schedule."
That's not how his letter to Douglas reads, however. He makes no mention of Symington being invited or not. Douglas campaign manager Dennise Casey said she didn't realize Symington wasn't invited until I mentioned it.
That prompted her to call it a campaign stunt and suggest that chances were slim Douglas would take part.
"I don't think the governor is interested in participating in a political stunt orchestrated by Anthony Pollina," Casey said. "This is hypocritical of Anthony Pollina to try to squeeze out another candidate when he previously said all candidates should be included."
Pollina campaign manager Meg Brook said the sense of Symington's slip comes from more than the Rasmussen poll, but from conversations with people in the streets. Having Douglas and Pollina face off one-on-one would give voters a better sense of the contrast between the two, she said.
- Terri Hallenbeck