Idaho Falls Republican Bryan Smith says he’ll forego a debate in his hometown against the man whose job he’s trying to take: eight-term incumbent Mike Simpson.
Carrie Brown, Smith’s campaign manager, said she objected to the selection of David Adler, a constitutional scholar who is the director of Boise State University’s Andrus Center for Public Policy, as moderator of the first of three scheduled debates as soon as she found out the host, Idaho Falls City Club, had selected him. She said she suggested three alternatives, each a member of the Idaho Falls news media, as replacements, but the club’s board denied her request.
The Smith campaign doesn’t trust Adler because of his public stances in favor of Simpson and against Smith, Brown said.
The Idaho Falls debate was scheduled to take place April 15. Two debates remain: one scheduled for April 25 in Twin Falls and the second May 11 in Boise. Autumn Phillips, editor of the Twin Falls Times-News, is slated as the April 15 moderator. According to the Simpson campaign, Idaho Reports co-host Melissa Davlin will moderate the May 11 debate, set to take place in Idaho Public Television studios.