Paul Broun REALLY Scared of Debates

Well, it seems that Congressman Paul Broun is really scared of debating his Congressional opposition, Bobby Saxon.

Thanks to Jim Galloway at the AJC’s Political Insider:

The following has been posted on the web site of WGAU(1340AM) in Athens, says radio host Tim Bryant:

A spokesperson for the campaign of Congressman Paul Broun Jr. says the 10th District Republican will not take part in any local debates.

The Athens Press Club — comprised of News-Talk 1340 WGAU, The Athens Banner-Herald, and Flagpole Magazine — had been working to organize a forum with Rep. Broun and his challenger, Jackson County Democrat Bobby Saxon.

Broun campaign spokesperson Jessica Morris tells WGAU that not only will the congressman not participate in an Athens Press Club event, he will not participate in any debates in his hometown of Athens.

Broun won a narrow victory in last year’s special election after criticizing his runoff opponent, Columbia County State Senator Jim Whitehead, for his decision to duck debates in Athens.

I think that last line is the best…  “Broun won a narrow victory in last year’s special election after criticizing his runoff opponent, Columbia County State Senator Jim Whitehead, for his decision to duck debates in Athens.”

I guess he doesn’t want to answer any more questions about how he expects the people to trust him with the nation’s budget when he can’t even handle an office budget.


  1. Game Fan says:

    This is basic politics. Nobody wants to take part in a debate when they’re ahead in the polls. In football you don’t want to start passing the ball when you’re ahead 27-24.

  2. atlantaman says:

    It may be basic politics, but since he whined about no debates while running against Whitehead, it’s incredibly hypocritical on his part.

    Does Paul Broun stand for anything? Or is it all about making sure you stay in office first and then your convictions and service to the voters fall somewhere down the list.

    I’m a diehard Republican, and don’t feel he should be debating on a weekly basis, but it makes him look weak when he refuses to debate at all.

    Saxby is ahead in the polls, but he still has the gonads and respect for the voters to attend an average amount of debates for a safe incumbent.

    I’m sure Scott, Marshall, and Barrow are not planning on having many debates.

    Paul Broun was supposed to be an unordinary politician, but the more I hear about him (getting the taxpayers to finance his direct mail campaign, the inability to balance his office budget, and his cowering from a debate), the more I realize what makes him unordinary is he manages to be a bigger hypocrite than your average politician; which is quite a feat.

  3. GreenAllTheWay says:

    The simple fact that you base this blog on anything you read in the AJC completely discounts this to meaningless waste of internet space. Come up with a worthy news source so we can take you seriously.

  4. bowersville says:

    Bobby Saxon

    Who is Bobby Saxon?

    The question is rhetorical, but that’s the way it is in CD-10.

    Bobby don’t blame Broun if there are no debates, it was the progressives in your own party that kicked you to the curb when they wouldn’t donate to help you get name recognition.

  5. modcon says:

    It’s a shame he can’t get his hands on $600,000 or $700,000 to send out weekly direct mailings to help build his name recognition.

  6. atlantaman says:

    It’s not really a shame now, since the election was over when he won the primary.

    Refusing to debate makes him look weak and unqualified. Not exactly a Profile in Courage.

  7. Holly says:

    Also, Broun probably can’t afford the flight from DC.

    Funny you should mention that. . . I can’t figure out from his disclosures (campaign or federal) how he’s been traveling back and forth since June. But he has been traveling back and forth.

    Maybe they didn’t really use all that money for franking and he has a sooper sekret spacecraft. 🙂

  8. Palmetto Peach says:

    Game Fan is absolutely right. When you’re ahead and your opponent has no name ID to speak of, why in the world would you agree to give them free press by appearing to debate with them?

    This is only a story for folks who have never followed a campaign before . . . or those who work for the challenger’s campaign.

  9. Goldwater Conservative says:

    I have been following this race for a while. Afterall, the campaign season for the 10th has not ended for a while…and Saxon opened his campaign the month following Broun’s election.

    Not debating makes him look like he has business to conduct…like being our Congressman. It is not his job to debate a candidate that has no chance of winning.

    Furthermore, it is not as if Broun has not been communicating with his constituents. He hold teleconferences, sends us mail, is in the district a lot, etc.

    Saxon has some interesting disclosures. Does he have any professional staff?

    It does not take long to peruse his disclosures,…there is no polling, production, fundraising, research,…staff. No wonder he is a loser. He paid five grand to have his name on wikipedia as the guy that lost to Paul Broun by 40 points.

  10. atlantaman says:

    I think folks are getting two things mixed up: campaign strategy and serving the people as a statesman.

    From a pure protect your ass campaign strategy standpoint I agree with Broun not doing the debates, why risk making a fool of yourself (which he is capable of doing) when you’ll probably win the election without having to answer questions.

    From a having enough confidence in yourself, not being a hypocrite and respect for the process standpoint he’s failing miserably.

    I disagree with this statement: “When you’re ahead and your opponent has no name ID to speak of, why in the world would you agree to give them free press by appearing to debate with them”, because incumbent politicians debate unknown candidates all of the time. It’s a right of passage and let’s folks know you’ve got a minimal set of gonads. I’d know Price had the guts to debate unknown opponents and I respect him more for it. It’s probably why Price will move up in the leadership and Broun will always be known as a bumbling coward.

    Paul Broun, and his calling for more debates, was a cornerstone of his campaign against Whitehead. For him to already break this pledge is disheartening. It’s also scary to see that there are folks who are so caught up in the game of winning that they make no distinction between campaign strategy and honor – it’s fairly Clintonian.

  11. Goldwater Conservative says:

    That was an openseat election though, atlantaman.


    Let’s (and by let’s I mean you) stop poking at the Clintons. Bush has given us plenty more to complain about.

  12. jdanja says:

    The problem with all of these “news reports” is that they are not reporting the entire story. It is not like Congressman Broun last year said “We Must Debate!” and all the sudden this year he’s declared that there must never be a debate.

    He has already participated in nearly a dozen debates or forums this summer…Bobby Saxon being on stage with him at several of them.

    This is definitely biased news reporting by media folks who got their feelings hurt that their sponsored debate won’t feature the Congressman. For further consideration, Congressman Broun participated in their Athens Press Club debate before the primary.

    I think Dr. Broun has made himself MORE than available over the past year and all throughout the summer, attending church & school functions, meetings, community events, and town halls. Afterall, he’s getting paid to represent you in Washington…not to run around to every campaign debate in the district.

  13. atlantaman says:

    “That was an openseat election though, atlantaman.” Not sure if I understand the distinction of criticizing Whitehead for not debating in an open seat versus his not debating as an incumbent a year later. Is it that incumbents are supposed to be more sheltered from the people?

    “not to run around to every campaign debate in the district.”

    It would be nice if he had the gonads to do one actual debate, not some pre-primary wimpy forum. It’s not as if debate doesn’t have a history in American politics.

    He has plenty of time to do forums and town halls, but doing one debate would take too much time away from his work in Washington – laughable.

    I suppose when the rest of the incumbent politicians, democrat and republican, do debates against their respective challengers it’s a waste of taxpayer dollars and they are actually doing the people of their districts and states a disservice. Paul Broun is working for the children of his district by not doing debates. It all makes sense now.

    The lengths that folks will go to justify Broun’s hypocrisy is funny. I think the people who supported him just need to own up to the fact that he didn’t turn out to be the principled representative of the people we all thought he would. The borderline Constitutionalist / Libertarian philosophy is a really great idea unless your campaign is in trouble, then let the taxpayers finance your campaign.

    I bet two years from now, when nobody runs against him, he’ll call for a full series of Lincoln / Douglas style debates.

  14. atlantaman says:

    When he blew his entire yearly office budget in six months on franking his supporters said he was only working hard to communicate with his district.

    When he refuses to debate his supporters say it makes him look more busy, like a Congressman.

    Time to take the rose colored glasses off.

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