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Baron Hill is afraid to debate

Herald-Times, September 5, 2006

To the editor:

Baron Hill has been calling for a debate focused on one issue: energy policy. Hill was so determined to get his way on limited debates that he threatened to abandon the Aug. 31 debate in Bloomington, earning the nickname "Back out Baron." Libertarian candidate Eric Schansberg scolded Hill by saying Hill is "giving voters the impression that he can only handle one subject at a time."

The obvious childishness behind Hill's threat to take his ball and go home if he did not get his way is disturbing. That is not the way I expect a congressman or a congressional candidate to behave.

If Hill truly believes that there needs to be an in-depth discussion on specific issues, there is no reason that discussion needs to be tied to the limited time frame of a face-to-face debate. Hill and his opponents have campaign Web sites where they can propose detailed position statements and policy proposals.

Was Baron Hill's demand for single-issue debates a serious proposal or a publicity stunt? Given that Hill ignored Schansberg's invitation to debate energy issues, it appears to be the latter. In terms of serious, involved debates, voters should not have to ask, "Where is Baron?"

Scott Tibbs.