Republican candidate for Sheriff Bill Prim Saturday called Andrew Zinke’s decision to pull out of the only scheduled debate a decision that denies the people of McHenry County a chance to weigh for themselves the qualities and abilities of the two candidates.
“Mr. Zinke has now deprived the voters of an excellent opportunity not only to learn our positions on the issues but to get a sense of the people behind the positions, and how we conduct ourselves in a high-stakes, high-pressure environment.
“The Sheriff’s Office, and law enforcement in general, is frequently stressful,” Prim added. “Voters want to see for themselves how a candidate for that office operates when he has to think on his feet and make rapid decisions. Mr. Zinke has just denied the voters that chance, and that is a feeble showing indeed.”
The Prim and Zinke campaigns had previously both formally committed to the debate, to take place under the sponsorship of Patriots United. No other organizations, neither the Northwest Herald newspaper nor the League of Women Voters (both of which have been mentioned as possible debate sponsors), have contacted the Prim campaign regarding a debate before the March 18 primary election. Either of those groups would be fine with him, Prim said.
Prim said voters should be on the lookout for Zinke to find scheduling difficulties or other reasons to avoid any other debates. “Mr. Zinke will have a very hard time defending his decision to give the RITA Corporation, and his political donor, early warning about DEA surveillance of a drug shipment, not to mention the huge budget run-ups in the Sheriff’s Office over the last several years with nothing to show for it. I expect him to drag his feet regarding debates in order to avoid defending himself on these and other issues.”