Republican Sen. David Perdue, of Georgia, has declined an invitation to debate Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff ahead of the January runoff election for his seat, CNN reported Sunday. Perdue and Ossoff are headed for a January 5 runoff after neither candidate was able to garner 50% of the vote on Election Day.
Perdue declined an invitation to participate in a December 6 debate with his Democratic rival, the News network reported, citing MaryLynn Ryan, the chair of the Atlanta Press Club, which is hosting two separate debates for both Senate runoffs.
Ossoff’s campaign told CNN they have accepted the Press Club’s invitation, with Ossoff tweeting Sunday, “Looks like Sen. David Perdue is too much of a coward to debate me again. … Senator, come on out and try to defend your record. I’m ready to go.”
Perdue sparked widespread backlash after withdrawing from a debate just before Election Day, following a debate that saw Ossoff label Perdue a “crook” and Perdue accuse Ossoff of profiting off China. Instead, Perdue attended a Trump rally in northwest Georgia.
Ossoff responded during a Sunday rally in the Atlanta suburbs, calling a debate “the bare minimum” voters should expect from candidates.
He also slammed Perdue as a “crook and a coward” on Twitter.
David Perdue isn’t just a crook –– he’s a coward, too. https://t.co/qYUO1MwREP
— Jon Ossoff (@ossoff) November 16, 2020