Flowers, Szeliga say Van Hollen ‘afraid to debate mothers’


In an unusual move in an unusual election year, the Green Party and Republican candidates for U.S. Senate have produced a joint video challenging Democrat Chris Van Hollen to a televised three-way debate.

“We don’t agree on everything,” says Margaret Flowers of the Green Party in the video. “But we do agree that voters should have a choice this year,” says Republican Kathy Szeliga.

They say that several TV outlets have agreed to host three-way debates, including Maryland Public Television, with a statewide reach.

“Chris Van Hollen is keeping Maryland voters in the dark by not agreeing to a tv debate with all 3 candidates,” says a slide.

Flowers, whose name is on the ballot, was thrown out when she tried to crash the only televised debate between Szeliga and Van Hollen last week at the University of Baltimore.

“Why is Chris Van Hollen afraid to debate two Maryland mothers?” Flowers and Szeliga say together.

That’s not how the Van Hollen camp sees it. Bridgett Frey, spokeswoman for the Van Hollen for Senate Campaign, said:

“Chris Van Hollen has participated in eight debates and forums this fall — more media-sponsored debates than any of the last four Senate general election campaigns — including a televised debate that aired statewide on C-SPAN.

“Van Hollen repeatedly made it clear that he was happy to include Dr. Flowers in those debates, but the rules of participation were decided by the media sponsoring the events. In the final days of this campaign, he’ll continue to speak with voters about his vision to move Maryland forward.”