U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann and two of his challengers, Ron Bhalla and Weston Wamp, said they would participate in a 3rd Congressional District Republican primary debate sponsored by the Chattanooga Times Free Press and WRCB-TV.
Scottie Mayfield rejected an invitation to the May 21 debate. A campaign spokesman, Joe Hendrix, emailed a statement to the newspaper Wednesday.
"Scottie believes the majority of those who attend debates have already made up their mind who they are going to vote for," Hendrix wrote. "The issues are not where the candidates differ, it's experience."
This will be the second debate invitation Mayfield has shunned in two weeks. In late April, the Athens, Tenn., dairy executive was the only 3rd District Republican candidate to decline an upcoming Chattanooga Tea Party debate.
Mayfield recently described debates as "divisive," and a recent YouTube video showed him saying he must get elected to Congress before explaining his legislative goals.
For complete details, see tomorrow's Chattanooga Times Free Press.