April 21, 2014

Hall, Deuell should debate opponents

Run-off elections for two major political races are just around the corner. Incumbents Ralph Hall (U.S. Representative for House District 4) and Dr. Bob Deuell (State Senator for State District 2) are facing off against challengers John Ratcliffe and Bob Hall, respectively, after failing to receive 50 percent or more of the vote in the March primary election.

While the elections took place more than a month ago, no public debates have been held for these two races, and we believe that it is imperative that the incumbents accept the invitations of their challengers to debate.

While Ralph Hall and Deuell have not refused to debate, they also have not committed to participating in them, either. Ratcliffe and Bob Hall have both indicated that they are willing to debate, with Ratcliffe going as far to publicly call for debates with Ralph Hall.

Both incumbents are facing their first real challenge in recent memory. It is clear from the primary voting totals that, while the incumbents both garnered the majority of the vote, at least some constituents are ready for change.

A debate would accomplish a wide variety of tasks for all of the candidates. It would help raise awareness of the upcoming run-off election on May 27. It would also help voters who did not vote for either candidate decided on whom to support. A debate would display for voters the candidates’ abilities to think critically and quickly.

We want our readers to have access to as much information as possible, so when they go to the polls, they can make an informed and calculated decision. A series of debates between candidates would provide much of that information. The Herald-Banner is ready and willing to host both debates.

It is imperative that candidates for both races make participating in a public debate a priority.

This opinion reflects that of the Herald-Banner editorial board. The board can be reached at editor@heraldbanner.com.