Two proposed debates, two cancellations in the 24th State Senate district. But on Thursday the candidates were both at a debate sponsored by a realtors group. Democratic challenger Jason Bartlett thanked the other candidates in attendance, but said they serve as a cover for his opponent who refuses to debate him.
Republican Mike McLachlan addressed the moderator saying he if thankful his mother told him to listen carefully to questions and he will respond appropriately, unlike his opponent who he said went off on a tangent.
Bartlett accused McLachlan of hiding. McLachlan responded that rules were laid out for this debate, unlike the NAACP proposal and one that came at the last minute, a college sponsored debate.
McLachlan said he would like to take time to respond to irresponsible remarks by his opponent. He wondered why Bartlett would take credit for so many things at the state legislation when teamwork is required.
Bartlett said he would match his record against McLachlan's because while he was working on education reforms, McLachlan introduced the birther bill. McLachlan fired back saying that Bartlett would make a great grandfather because he's a story teller. McLachlan then told Bartlett that he needs to calm down, be respectful of constituents and stop telling stories.
Bartlett said it sounded like McLachlan is ready to debate and proposed that they both attend a forum sponsored by Naugatuck Valley Community College on Thursday at the Palace Theater in Danbury.
The district covers Bethel, Danbury, New Fairfield and Sherman.