UPDATE: Candidate Myers responds to Democratic debate challenge

By Vasanth Sridharan

Judy Myers, Republican State Senate candidate for the 52nd District, responded this morning to a 10-debate challenge laid by Democratic opponent Mike Frerichs Thursday.

The response centered on Joe Parnarauskis, Socialist Equality Party candidate for the seat. On Thursday, Frerichs challenged Myers to 10 debates, which would take place between Labor Day and Election Day, in ten cities across the district, including Champaign and Urbana. According to a release from the Myers campaign, on Friday, Myers mailed a letter to Frerichs calling on him to rebuke the Democratic efforts to shut out Parnarauskis.

“I believe every person who wants to run for office and collects the necessary signatures deserves a place on the ballot,” Myers said, in the release.

In the release, Myers said she is open to debates and that she intends to participate in a series of them.

Frerichs said that the only reason Parnarauskis was not issued the challenge is because Parnarauskis is not on the ballot yet.

“Every candidate that is on the ballot is welcome to participate,” he said.

Parnarauskis said in a statement Friday afternoon that he doesn’t support either the Democrats or the Republicans, and that he will continue to fight to get on the November ballot.

“Five thousand people in Champaign and Vermilion counties signed my nominating petitions to give voice to their opposition to war, to attacks on democratic rights and living standards, and so that another option be included on the ballot and in all political debates,” he said in the statement.