Herbst Issues Debate Challenge

From the Herbst campaign:

GOP gubernatorial candidate and former Trumbull First Selectman Tim Herbst today called on his fellow Republican gubernatorial hopefuls to agree to a series of at least 10 debates.

“In this critical election for Connecticut’s future, Republican Primary voters deserve the opportunity to fully vet all the potential candidates for governor to make their own determination who is the best prepared to defeat out-of-touch Malloy enabler Ned Lamont in November, bring fundamental change to Hartford and restore prosperity to our state,” Herbst said.

There are currently only two scheduled debates–one in the first congressional district and one in the third congressional district. The first will be held at the Shubert Theater in New Haven sponsored by the CT Realtors Association on June 5, to be televised on WTNH, and the second will be held at the WFSB Studios in Rocky Hill on June 13th.

“We had five Republican debates before the convention for the benefit of likely GOP delegates,” Herbst continued. “110,000 likely GOP primary voters deserve at least double the opportunity to hear and see the candidates answer tough questions as 1,100 convention delegates.”

Herbst suggested the CTGOP should help facilitate the scheduling of additional debates–the CTGOP is not currently organizing any debates for the primary.

“I call on every Republican candidate for governor to join me in demanding the CTGOP immediately contact established news organizations in the state to schedule and confirm additional debates,” Herbst said.

“As a candidate, you have an obligation to face the voters, answer questions and share your vision for saving our state,” Herbst continued. “The State Party similarly has an obligation to facilitate these opportunities for voters to vet our candidates and ensure we put our best foot forward in the Fall.”

“We have candidates in this contest who have never won or even been through an election, candidates who have refused to answer serious questions about their viability and record and candidates who have never answered questions on stage,” Herbst said. “Republican voters simply must know the candidates they are considering for governor can stand on a stage and face tough questions.”

Herbst further suggested that any candidate who does not agree to at least 10 debates should exit the race for governor.

“If you don’t have enough confidence to stand on a stage 10 times, face the voters and answer tough questions, then you have no business running for governor and should drop out,” Herbst said.

“We have plenty of candidates for governor, what we don’t have are plenty of battle-tested candidates who have confidence in their message and a proven track record of winning elections,” Herbst said. “That is what I bring to the race. I am a proven reformer and Hartford outsider with the message and record to win next November.”

“Struggling Connecticut families deserve to hear from candidates who will level with them about the scale of Connecticut’s challenges, what they will do to tackle them and how they are going to win next November,” Herbst continued.

Herbst participated in all five CTGOP-sponsored debates held before the Convention on May 12. Herbst and Obsitnik were the only two of the six remaining candidates for governor to participate in every one of those debates.

Herbst’s campaign has already begun contacting media outlets and other potential hosts to express interest in additional debates.



  1. Tim, how in the hell does having a proven track record of winning elections translate to being a qualified candidate for governor? I think that one quality merely translate to you being a career politician, nothing more, nothing less.

    1. Donald, is he electable is thrown around candidates all the time, especially so in CT where the independent and open minded or reform minded democrat vote is a must win in the general election. More than one candidate in this primary has never been elected to office, convince people that’s a negative is the message.

      1. Jennifer, of all of the Republican candidates running for governor Tim Herbst is the biggest supporter of 45.

        Jennifer you said, in CT where’s the independent and open minded or reform minded democrat vote is a must win in the general election. Now I’m asking Where is that independent and open minded or reform minded Republican vote is a must win in the general election. As I watched the Republican convention I didn’t see or hear anyone who was black and none of their talking points and positions were directed to the black voters and for the urban cities like Bridgeport. We will not see the Republican candidates for governor coming into the black and Hispanic communities seeking and asking for their vote. As for the Democrats, at least there were black and Hispanics running for statewide office and black and Hispanics as delegates at the Democratic convention. I don’t like any of the candidates from both parties but I do know that the Republicans don’t give a damn about blacks. The blue wave will hit Connecticut just like it has been happening all over America with especially with the large black female voters who are voting in larger numbers than they did for Barack Obama. Make America great again didn’t work for blacks because they never want to go back to what they had before.

        1. Hello Ron, interesting points. The demographics of CT aren’t the same as the city demographics. https://statisticalatlas.com/state/Connecticut/Race-and-Ethnicity

          Unless there’s a really big get out the vote push in this off year election with candidates exciting the general population, It’s difficult at best to figure out who to support for Governor. What will be interesting to see is how the Trump – JG2 past relationship is played out in the election.

          1. Jennifer, Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Tom Perez and deputy chairman, Keith Ellison have been on the ground supporting Democrats and putting money into get out the vote and its paying off big time, just look at Virginia Democrats won the governor’s race and the Lt. Governor who is black, Democrats won the governors race in New Jersey, they defeated 45’s candidate for US Senate n Alabama Roy Moore in reddest state for 45. These Democrats who won are not big time player in their state instead it’s the ground game of getting their voters out to vote.

            Jennifer, there is no one running for governor as a Republican who is like Mayor Toni Harp who can go into any city and town in Connecticut to get out the vote but especially black female voters along with white females. None of the Republican candidate can freely go into the black and Hispanic communities and feel comfortable in going into those communities asking for their vote.


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