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Ausley urges Atwater to accept last-minute debate

CFO candidate Loranne Ausley today urged her opponent Jeff Atwater to accept a last-ditch debate -- on Oct. 28 in Miami for Univision. The Spanish-language station, which is sponsoring a debate today in the governor's race, has said that is the only date left that it can sponsor a debate.

"So I'm calling on Jeff Atwater to stop hiding, stop ignoring the issue of our state and his record, and have a debate," Ausley said. "No more excuses, no more stalling."

Earlier, a Florida Press Association/Leadership Florida debate for Cabinet races fell through after Atwater and AG candidate Pam Bondi didn't accept. Atwater's folks say they are considering the 28th: “We’re hoping to make it work,” said Atwater spokesman Brian Hughes. “But as you can expect, with 25 days left to go in a campaign, we can’t be everywhere all the time.” (Hughes points out they accepted the 21st, while Ausley's camp says it preferred both the 14th and 28th but would have taken the 21st if it were the only option.)