ETV says it won’t televise this year’s SC candidate debates

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – South Carolina’s public broadcasting network won’t televise debates between the state’s candidates ahead of this fall’s general election.

The State newspaper reports South Carolina Educational Television made the decision Monday after receiving a request to televise a planned 2nd District face-off between U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson and his Democratic challenger, Columbia librarian Arik Bjorn. SCETV spokesman Tom Posey says the network’s decision is common in election cycles that don’t include gubernatorial races. He also says ETV’s resources and staffing played into the decision.

Posey also said South Carolina’s primaries are “generally more fertile ground for debate.” In June, the network covered a GOP primary debate between U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford and state Rep. Jenny Horne.

ETV still will carry special programming on election night.

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