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September 16, 2014

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Face the Facts: If you can’t come into the studio, you will take the heat

On Tuesday's "Face to Face," I did a "Face the Facts" on a candidate who refuses to come on even though she has announced for Congress and been in office for a decade and a half. Why not?

Here's what I said about her and why such craven behavior will be called out in Campaign '12:

Now it’s time to Face the Facts.

As the Nevada campaign season begins, and we at this program try to help illuminate what can be opaque, a word about candidate responsibility.

Unfortunately, too many of those running for office choose to hide from public view and let their ad campaigns or consultants do the talking for them. That is as red a flag as you will see. It tells you those folks are afraid of exposing either themselves or their views to public scrutiny – or both.

Here at Face to Face, we have for years provided forums for candidates and elected officials to present their views. Yes, we try to pierce the talking points and the superficial answers. But we always allow those seeking office to show viewers why they should be considered – or, in some cases, why they should not be.

We also have and will provide opportunities for candidates to debate each other. Those who refuse will be called out – and you can draw your own conclusions.

Alas, the dodging already has begun. This week, we are bringing you interviews with two candidates for the Republican n9mination in Nevada’s new congressional district. We talked today to Dan Schwartz, a political newcomer, and Wednesday we are scheduled to have Danny Tarkanian.

But state Senator Barbara Cegavske so far has rebuffed our requests for an interview. She has not appeared on this program.

Cegavske was the first Republican candidate to announce for the seat exactly two months ago. First, we were told she would come on right after the first of the year. Then, we were told perhaps when filing opens in March. Now, I’m not so sure we will get her at all.

This is outrageous. Cegavkse has been in office for almost a decade and a half. What is she afraid of?

Yes, I have been critical of her at times. But many politicians who I have taken to task have agreed to come on this program, including Steven Horsford, who has been on many times. And just ask Danny Tarkanian how kind I have been to him over the years – we have had our moments.

I single out Cegavske not simply because a race for Congress is so important or because her dodge is so immediate and relevant. I do so to make the specific point about her and the more general one about candidates seeking office this cycle.

Unlike some in my business, I have an abiding respect for those who decide they want to serve, who sacrifice professionally and personally to put their names before voters. It is not easy and sometimes you even have to deal with jerks in the media.

If you are willing to put your name on the ballot, you should be willing to come on and answer questions about your campaign. If you don’t, people should wonder why. And if you don’t, we will let people know.

And that’s Face the Facts.

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