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U.S. Sen and Louisiana gubernatorial candidate David Vitter misses Oct. 7 debate 

  After WDSU-TV received fierce blowback for the questions posed during its Oct. 1 gubernatorial debate, moderators at an Oct. 7 debate in Baton Rouge made sure the candidates stuck to fiscal matters. Many felt WDSU's questions focused too much on social issues and not enough on the budget and taxes.

  At last week's debate, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, state Rep. John Bel Edwards and Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne largely talked policy. U.S. Sen. David Vitter was absent; Vitter's staff said he was working in Washington, D.C. (Dardenne called him "the elephant who wasn't in the room.")

  Last week's debate was hosted by Baton Rouge's WVLA-TV and KTAL-TV in Shreveport and broadcast around the state. The only non-wonky part of the evening came when WVLA's Fred Hickman, in what he called a "getting to know you" segment, asked the candidates how they proposed to their wives and what was their most difficult moment as a parent — both questions Vitter probably was happy to have missed.

  Louisiana Public Broadcasting will host a debate Oct. 14. Vitter spokesman Luke Bolar confirmed the senator will appear at the American Federation for Children Gubernatorial Debate in New Orleans Oct. 12, as well as a debate at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston Oct. 15. The Ruston debate will be televised.


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