Gubernatorial Debate Features Five Candidates, Minus Quinn and Brady

July 08, 2010

Third party and independent candidates for Illinois governor took part in the first debate of the general election Thursday night. Democratic Governor Pat Quinn and Republican state Senator Bill Brady opted not to attend.

The Green Party's nominee for governor, Rich Whitney, called the missing Quinn and Brady "the elephants in the...not in the room, I guess you might say."

About 50 spectators showed up at Chicago State University to see the five-candidate debate.

Whitney is the only one with a secure spot on the ballot.

Budget issues dominated, with Whitney calling for tax increases, and eventually, free college tuition.

In contrast, the Libertarian Party's Lex Green said state residents should instead rely more on their communities and private charities, "because, as we see already, the state can't do it."

Independent Bill "Dock" Walls said Illinois should sell naming rights for highways and state buildings.

"I'd love to see the Microsoft Thompson Center", said Walls, by way of example.

Also at the debate: independent candidate Scott Lee Cohen and the Constitution Party's Michael White.

Story source: AP