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Huckleberries Online

Fri., May 16, 2014, 9:28 a.m.

Debate Moderator: ‘I Did My Best’

On her Facebook page, moderator Melissa Davlin of the Idaho gubernatorial debate posts:

"I didn't expect this debate to get so much national attention, but here we are. The entire Idaho Debates team and I take this process seriously; So seriously that when it was clear this was the only time Sen. Fulcher and Gov. Otter would publicly debate, we wanted to facilitate that happening. It's been widely reported that Gov. Otter said all candidates in his race must be invited for him to participate, even those who wouldn't normally qualify under our standards. He's made this request in past races, too. Because this would be the only gubernatorial primary debate, we agreed to those conditions. Without Gov. Otter, there would be no debate. As moderator, I did my best to keep the conversation on track while showing respect to everyone on stage. I want to reiterate how seriously we take this process. At some point, we had to acknowledge that there were funny moments, and we can have a laugh about it. But I do hope viewers pay attention to the actual exchanges between Sen. Fulcher and Gov. Otter.

Question: Could Otter's debate tactic of insisting on the inclusion of fringe candidates Harley Brown and Walt Bayes backfire on him?

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D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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