Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Group tells candidates: You can't participate in forum

A local business organization is hosting a mayoral candidate forum in Colorado Springs. Ok. That's normal. 

Six mayoral candidates will speak at a forum. Normal. 

Three mayoral candidates aren't invited to participate in the forum. Hmm. Not so normal.

The local newspaper reported this about the decision:

“While your campaign undoubtedly contributes to citizen engagement, at this time it appears to us that it has not reached sufficient critical mass to include you on the panel that evening,” Robert Todd, chairman of Middle Market Entrepreneurs, which is organizing the forum, said in a letter to the three candidates.

Two of the three candidates are calling for a boycott of the forum. Wow.

There are nine candidates for the strong mayor position. More candidates equals more research for voters. The variety of forums around town generate news stories and provide more details for voters to digest. I think that's a good thing.

I'm shocked by the idea of eliminating candidates from a forum. And, trust me, I don't know any of the candidates. No one has knocked on my door asking for a vote. I only see Ukraine artists and carpet cleaners, who want to argue with me when I say I'm not interested.

The whole situation makes me wonder about the group hosting the forum. I know it's the organizations right to determine the limits of their forum. But, I wonder why any group should bother hosting a mayoral election, if it doesn't invite all the candidates?

What's the point?

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