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Southern California Left Out of Gubernatorial Debate Circuit -- Again

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Now that Labor Day weekend is past, the political season is heating up. As of this morning, there were three debates scheduled between gubernatorial candidates Jerry Brown, who finally began running ads this week, and Meg Whitman -- two in Northern California and one in Central California.

Noticeably, Southern California, where most voters live, is missing from that list and it's become a political talking point for Brown.

"I call on my opponent to stop ignoring Los Angeles," he said in a statement this morning. Brown had accepted 10 debate offers while Whitman said yes to two of them, in addition to one in Fresno. Today, Brown added the October 2nd Fresno debate.

What's interesting to note, as John Myers at KQED's Capital Notes points out, are two things. Firstly, the last gubernatorial debate in Southern California was in 2002. During the 2006 race and the 2003 recall, Southern California was left out.

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Secondly, "even if the debate calendar ultimately ends at three events in 2010, it will be the most gubernatorial forums since 1998, when Davis and Republican Dan Lungren participated in four debates," Myers said. In 2002, Gray Davis and GOP challenger Bill Simon held four debates.

The other two debates wlll take place on September 28 at UC Davis and on October 12 at the Dominican University in Marin County.