Daniel Gade, the Republican vying for Mark Warner’s Senate seat in Virginia, has challenged the former governor to five debates across the state ahead of November’s election.
Gade, a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel and professor at American University, is running for public office for the first time against Warner, who is seeking a third term and serves as the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
“Virginians deserve to hear the difference between Mark Warner’s do-nothing career and a fighter who can actually get things done in the Senate for Virginians,” Gade said in a statement on Monday.
The challenge from Gade comes after Warner issued his own to the eventual winner of last week’s primary, which Gade won handily. Warner challenged his Republican opponent to three debates, including one specifically focused on racial equality and justice that the senator wants to be held at one of the state’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
“Virginia voters deserve nothing less from their leaders than open and spirited debates that address the issues facing all Virginians and it’s our hope that the eventual Republican nominee will agree in good-faith to meet Mark on the debate stage,” Warner spokeswoman Kate Waters said before the primary.
According to his campaign, Gade has demanded that the debates be spread out across the commonwealth, including Southwest Virginia, Richmond, Southside, Tidewater and Northern Virginia. A release from the Gade campaign says they are currently in negotiations.
“I am thrilled to challenge Warner to these 5 debates that will cover real issues such as affordable healthcare, quality education, well-paying jobs, individual liberty and much more. As a warfighters and a professor, I look forward to debating Warner on the battlefield of ideas.”
This story is developing. Check back for updates.