Issues are not what are being discussed in the Oklahoma gubernatorial runoff campaign.
On the Democratic side, Rep. Wes Watkins has refused to debate businessman and 1986 nominee David Walters until Walters releases financial information detailing how he financed his last-minute media blitz for the Aug. 28 primary. Walters said he does not plan to release more information. A poll published Friday shows the two even in Tuesday's runoff.
The Republican candidates did debate -- although it was more of a shouting match than a debate. Former U.S. attorney Bill Price attacked front-runner Vince Orza over his business record. Orza, a restaurateur, has effectively portrayed himself as the "capable outsider" who has successfully run a business, but Price hammered on the restaurant chain's lack of profits and said "investors are losing their shirts."
Orza retaliated by demanding that Price release Justice Department evaluations of his performance as U.S. attorney. He also attacked Price for sending his children to private schools while calling for the repeal of an education tax and reform law. "He spends more money on tuition for his kids than most people earn," Orza chided.
Price, who trails Orza by 12 points in the latest poll, hopes he can sink Orza's campaign by repeatedly describing him as a liberal. Price is running a television ad aimed at Orza's opposition to a constitutional amendment banning flag-burning that features a hippie burning two flags.