Ninth District race heats up as Williams issues debate challenge

By Brandon Martin

Wren Williams, a candidate for the Republican nomination for 9th District in the Virginia House of Delegates, has issued a challenge to incumbent Del. Charles Poindexter, R-Glade Hill, for a series of debates leading into the primary.

Williams’ campaign issued a press release on April 26.

“I am challenging my opponent to three debates in three counties on three issues,” Williams said in the release. “This district is not the same as the one you and I grew up in and voters have told me they are concerned with the direction my opponent is taking our district. I just returned from fighting for President Donald J. Trump’s legal team and now I’m ready to continue that fight to take back our district. My opponent must defend to the voters why he has failed to secure our elections, forfeited our Republican majority to socialist liberals, and failed to protect our Second Amendment.”

The debates are slated to alternate topics and localities, according to Williams’ release, which specified the first debate would focus on “Securing Our Elections” and would take place in Franklin County. The second debate topic is “Protecting Our Conservative Values” which would be in Patrick County. The final debate would be held in Henry County and highlight “Jobs in Southwest & Southside Virginia.”

If Poindexter doesn’t agree to the debates, Williams will hold town halls instead, according to the release.

Cody Hanshaw, campaign manager for Poindexter, said that his team wasn’t aware of any debate proposals until the press release.

“This debate offer is nothing more than a PR stunt from Mr. Williams’s faltering campaign,” Hanshaw said in response. “If Mr. Williams or his staff were serious about debating us, they could have reached out to me directly. He would not have sent out a press release looking to get free media to cover a lackluster campaign. We will be checking our schedule for potential dates.”

Hanshaw said it would likely be “mid-May” before Poindexter’s schedule could accommodate such a request.






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