Hubler challenges King to eight debates

Democratic candidate Rob Hubler has sent an open letter to Congressman Steve King inviting him to participate in eight debates before the November election.

King refused to debate challenger Joyce Schulte in 2004 and 2006, but his spokeswoman did not immediately rule out the possibility that the incumbent would debate Hubler.

The sites proposed by Hubler for debates are geographically dispersed around the fifth district: Sioux City, Carroll, Spirit Lake, Red Oak, Storm Lake, Council Bluffs, Orange City, and Osceola.

Speaking of Storm Lake, the editor of the Storm Lake Times wrote in the July 5 issue that

We’re told by the Obama camp that it will push to win the Fifth District. It may sound far-fetched, but Democrats Berkley Bedell and Tom Harkin proved that a progressive with common sense can win in Western Iowa.

The conservative Christian base of the Republican Party that prevails in these quarters is not energized by GOP standard bearer John McCain as it was with Bush. It’s possible that turnout could be muted in November among this key voting bloc. […]

We could see Obama carrying the Fifth by winning Dickinson, Clay, Buena Vista, Carroll, Woodbury, Pottawattamie and Cherokee counties. That’s where the population is, and that’s where the most independent voters are. He might be able to compete in Crawford and O’Brien counties.[…]

Republican despondence also may be a threat to incumbent Rep. Steve King, R-Kiron. Scoff if you will, but again recall that Harkin defeated incumbent Bill Scherle and Bedell knocked off incumbent Wiley Mayne in the post-Watergate landslide. The atmospherics may be similar this year.

Sorry, no link is available on that newspaper’s website.

Hubler visited all 32 counties in the fifth district last year and has continued to campaign actively this year. He is visiting all the county fairs in the district during July.

The full text of the press release about Hubler’s open letter to King is after the jump.

FOR RELEASE: Contact: Keith Dinsmore

Wednesday July 9, 2008

573-230-5360 or 702-352-2077

Rob Hubler Invites Steve King

To Join Him in Debates Across District

COUNCIL BLUFFS – Rob Hubler, Democratic candidate for Congress in Iowa’s 5th district, has sent a letter to Republican incumbent Steve King inviting King to participate in a series of debates held in communities throughout the district, his campaign announced today.

In his letter, Hubler wrote that voters “deserve to hear both of our views on those issues which matter most to them.  I hope you agree that we have an obligation to clearly present our cases to the voters, in a way that includes as many citizens as possible.”

The letter was mailed to King in three locations: his home in Odebolt, his campaign post office box, and his office in Washington, D.C.

Hubler told King that he agreed with a statement King made during a recent speech in Sioux City: “What kind of a nation are we if we can’t have open dialogue?”  Hubler pointed out that the district is large and diverse as he proposed debates or joint meetings in eight locations.

The proposed debate schedule includes Sioux City, Carroll, Spirit Lake, Red Oak, Storm Lake, Council Bluffs, Orange City, and Osceola.

“The people in the 5th district deserve a spirited discussion of the issues facing them and our country,” said Hubler, a retired Presbyterian minister who formerly worked for Senator Dick Clark and Tom Harkin.  Hubler is also a Navy veteran who has taught severely disabled children.

In his campaign, Hubler has emphasized need for accessible healthcare, support for the new G. I. bill to help veterans attend college, investing in ethanol, wind and other renewable fuels to make America energy independent, reforming immigration policy, defending workers’ rights, and supporting family farms.

Hubler has announced plans to visit all 32 counties in the 5th congressional district during July to talk with voters throughout western Iowa beginning this weekend.  “I want the voters to know that I will serve them with honor, decency, integrity and compassion so that they can again be proud of their representative in congress,” he said.  “This election is about changing the way business is done in Washington and voters know that nothing will change until we change congress.”

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