Kilgore wimping out on debate. Again.

Lest there be any question that Jerry Kilgore is a big ol’ mama’s boy, we may now put that to rest.

Mike Shear writes in today’s Washington Post that Kilgore may well wimp out on the third and final debate with Tim Kaine. And on NBC 29 here in Charlottesville this evening, would-be moderator Larry Sabato says that he figures there’s only a 50/50 chance that Kilgore will show up. Why?

There have been two debates so far. The first was held in West Virginia. Seriously. There was no broadcast permitted, but I had fun with the audio [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6], which made Tim Kaine laugh and made Jerry Kilgore shed a single tear, not unlike an Indian when faced with pollution while canoeing. The second was held in Northern Virginia, moderated by Tim Russert, and broadcast on a TV station so reclusive that a) I’ve never heard of it and b) I’m yet to get ahold of either a transcript, the audio, or the video, or hear of any of these things existing anywhere. But I judge from media accounts that…what’s the phrase I’m looking for? Oh, yes: Tim Kaine clubbed Jerry Kilgore like a baby seal, leaving moderator Tim Russert to peel off Kilgore’s pelt with a sharpened stone and remove his iron-rich liver, eating it for its life-giving forces.

Apparently, moderator Larry Sabato has set some standards that are just too severe for Jerry Kilgore. For example, Sabato will not let the debate be held in a sealed cavern hidden far below the earth. Nor will he let Kilgore use a nifty earpiece/bulge combo like President Bush. Nor will Sabato force Kaine to wear a ball gag, a leash, and a black, studded latex suit for the duration. Worst of all, Sabato is requiring Kilgore to abide by the terms of the debate agreement, which in no way restricts the Kaine campaign from using any of the footage from the debate in TV commercials. That bastard! (I can’t imagine what made the Kilgore campaign so skittish about the reuse of footage from events. What? Moi? Oh, but you do go on!)

To be fair, Kilgore debates like he throws. The most damaging thing for the Kilgore campaign would be for a majority of the voting public to witness him utter a single word. The Kilgore campaign is so cognizant of this that their current TV ad features his twin brother Terry Kilgore speaking in his stead, since he lacks that certain…oh…quelle heure est-il that Jerry has.

As potentially-mortally wounding that yet another debate duck would do for Kilgore, it wouldn’t be nearly as damaging as if he actually showed up. Kaine would take Kilgore over his knee again, only this time with people watching. The only mystery left is whether the Kilgore campaign will be foolish enough to attack Larry Sabato, as they did Tim Russert, and claim that he’s part of the Vast Left Wing Conspiracy that’s so determined to defeat Kilgore.

Of course, the strongest force working against Jerry Kilgore isn’t really the left. It’s Jerry Kilgore.

Published by Waldo Jaquith

Waldo Jaquith (JAKE-with) is an open government technologist who lives near Char­lottes­­ville, VA, USA. more »

29 replies on “Kilgore wimping out on debate. Again.”

  1. I was lucky enough to live in an area where the second debate was televised. I can tell you that, as bad as the print media made Kilgore’s performance sound, believe me it was worse. Every time Kilgore talked it was toe-curlingly painful to watch. An extremely fun game would be to print out the questions and kilgore’s answers on different pieces of paper and try to match them up. You wouldn’t be able to do it. All kilgore did was repeat the same half-dozen sentences over and over. That is what finally forced russert to do what he did (and by the way, i’ll wager that the only person in that room that didn’t see the trick question coming a mile awy was jk) The fact that he expected people to fall for that should be considered an enormous insult. Kaine, on the other hand, was brilliant.

    It has been extremely infuriating to me as a Kaine-supporter that this has not had more effect on the campaign. Same goes for many?..three or four debates Kaine and Potts have had that Kilgore ducked. I’ve pinned my hopes on Oct 9 as the final coup de grace for the Kilgore campaign. If Kilgore backs out on this one based on some contrived excuse and then asks the voters to elect him anyway, I can only hope the media comes down HARD on him for it to make people sit up and take notice.

  2. As a follow up to my last post, although agree with most of what you said about the debates, I can’t condone making fun of the way Kilgore talks. Kilgore’s southwest virginia accent is nothing to make fun of. Nor is that other hallmark of a true country boy: the love of disco. In a recent WP column jk discussed his love of 70s dance music, saying, “I like the beat of disco”. So let’s stick to the issues and not pick on southwest virginia culture.

  3. Here’s why Jerry Kilgore won’t debate:

    His campaign managers are afraid that VIRGINIANS will hear him and think he’s a “homosexual stereotype”.

    Let’s not parce words here folks. That is the ONE AND ONLY REASON he is not debating.



    It’s sad that so many Virginians feel that Jerry Kilgore sounds like a homosexual stereotype (there is NOTHING wrong with being a homosexual or sounding like one – but there is a certain portion of our population [see: conservatives] who don’t like homosexuals and want them all rounded up and jailed for illegal sodomy.) So Kilgore is making the correct call not debating here. Even though I don’t think he sounds homosexual…he sounds southern and has an accent that’s much different from mine, but southern nevertheless. and I’m sensitive to people making fun of his accent. That’s wrong, and it’s despicable.

    The guy isn’t a homosexual. people need to stop slandering him. He’s obviously got kids and just becuase he isnt’ blessed with the strongest voice, he’s a really good guy and has some good policy ideas. I particularly like the regional transportation authorities idea (minus the wimpy referendum idea, of course).

    But sadly, in this day and age where homosexuals are being attacked left and right, people who happen to sound like a homosexual stereotype are persecuted. So I completely understand Jerry avoiding the debates because many people would unfairly judge him as a homosexual. And that might confuse people into believing that he supports gay marriage.

  4. Oh my god Simon. I cannot believe that you just implied that Tim Kaine’s staffers are homosexuals.

    You are a bad person. Being a homosexual is like being an alcoholic, a drug addict, or a murderer. It’s a bad thing. It’s a sin.

    So naturally, your implication is very very bad. It’s a huge insult for Kaine’s staffers, and i bet their housewife neighbors will tell everyone.

    You are very very bad.

  5. Thomas Jefferson, you miss the point about Jerry Kilgore’s speaking voice. Waldo isn’t making fun of his southwest Virginia accent, nor, to my knowledge, is anybody else. He’s making fun of Jerry Kilgore’s feminine whine. That’s the whole point of the commercial using his twin brother’s voice. It demonstrates the southwest Virginia accent that Terry shares with Terry (which is a positive) without the inclusion of the girlie-man intonation (which is a negative).

  6. I hope you’ll apply these same standards and condemn Hilda Barg for her refusal to debate Delegate Jeff Frederick. It’s understandable (people might notice John Jenkins’ hand in her back, after all) but a little inconsistent for Dems condemning Kilgore who remain silent on Barg.

  7. I hope you’ll apply these same standards and condemn Hilda Barg for her refusal to debate Delegate Jeff Frederick. It’s understandable (people might notice John Jenkins’ hand in her back, after all) but a little inconsistent for Dems condemning Kilgore who remain silent on Barg.

    Not only do I know nothing about the Frederick/Barg race, I know nothing about a debate (or lack thereof), and I’ve never heard of John Jenkins. Let’s not confuse my ignorance with malice. :)

  8. Thomas Jefferson,

    Are you implying that every one from south west Virginia talks like a weak little sissy? This is insulting to southern people. Jerry Kilgore is a very rare exception among people from his area. He is the only ‘man’ from SW Va who I have ever heard talking like Mr. Garrison from South Park. The rest of them are carrying the full set between their legs.

  9. “quelle heure est-il”???
    Jerry doesn’t know what time it is? What does that have to do with speaking?

  10. Oh Damn! I just figured out the Kilgore campaing tactic, and I am scared… it is truly diabolical in it’s effectiveness… Jerry will wait until the last minute, then allow the debate – but by then he’ll have had an operation to change his voice box… he’ll sound like…


    Then the voters will see: Kilgore the Terminator.

    We are doomed, voters will flock to him like lost sheep – it’s over…..

    (sorry – could not resist the temptation to be silly)

  11. “Cut the crap” — did you *see* the second debate? If you did, you’d know that the reason Kilgore is trying to duck another televised debate (with no restrictions on the use of the footage) is that he’s *really* bad at it. He’s clearly unable to think on his feet, the canned ideas he does present are pretty thin. If the Kaine campaign had been able to use footage in campaign ads, I guarantee you would have seen a clip of Jerry responding to a disaster-response question by saying he’d like to be like George W. Bush in New Orleans, and his staff is clearly terrified of another moment like that.

    You can shout things in ALL CAPS all you like, but it doesn’t make them any more true.

  12. Waldo — I had the debate on TiVo for a while, but my wife needed to make room for an episode of “Lost.” :-) I’ll check around and see if I can find someone who still has it, and can make a copy of it for you.

  13. “quelle heure est-il”???
    Jerry doesn’t know what time it is? What does that have to do with speaking?

    It’s a little self-effacing joke.

    I’ll check around and see if I can find someone who still has it, and can make a copy of it for you.

    Wow, thank you, Jim — that would be totally great.

  14. Maybe if we widely distributed lithium or some other mind-altering narcotic to everyone in the commonwealth, then Jerry would agree to stand up in front of them. I mean, you’d have to be drugged to trust or support Jerry Kilgore once you hear him in a debate.




  16. Sorry, Waldo. Inside PWC baseball. Frederick won Rollison’s seat last time, taking the GOP nomination in the primary. Warner is funding Hilda, and I think NLS may finally be getting the message that Hilda’s probably going to lose. Jenkins is the other Dem Supervisor in PWC, and he does a great imitation of Edgar Bergen to Hilda’s Charlie McCarthy. And if you’re too young to get that reference, phhhhhhhhht!

  17. Cut the Crap, isn’t it true that Jerry Kilgore really IS pro-gay marriage, just as long as gays marry somebody of the opposite sex?

  18. For all of Kilgore’s anti-black, anti-hispanic, anti-woman, grandstanding positions, he does seem to be strangely
    non-anti-gay. I don’t think he’s ever actually taken a position, except to wrongly accuse Tim Kaine of
    being for adoption by gay couples.

    Tim has actually never come out for gay adoptions by couples, btw. As I understand it, Tim is against a “gay” litmus test for single adopteive parents. How do you prove it?

  19. Cut the Crap,

    It’s not that we think he’s gay. That would be fine – most people respect gay people. I respect gay people.

    The problem is that he’s a weak little sissy. This is a statement of fact – I’ve never heard a single Republican even attempt to refute this clear reality. Watch him on your TV screen for 2 minutes and tell me with a straight face that this ‘man’ is not a weak little sissy.

    This has nothing to do with gay marriage. We just can’t have a weak little coward for a governor. How can you look up to a man that sounds like that? How can you respect a man that’s scared to debate his opponent in public? The answer is that you can’t. Do you want Virginia to be a laughing stock? Do you really want to put party politics ahead of this commonwealth’s image? You want ‘Mr. Garrison’ to be the face of Virginia?

    Have you seen ‘Saving Private Ryan’? Remember that little private who hauled the typewriter around and was too much of a coward to shoot the German in front of him around the end of the movie. That’s Jerry Kilgore all over.

  20. ATA:


    STOP IT.


  21. I will stop typing in all caps because I believe I’ve made my point and everyone who isn’t completely insane should agree with me now.

  22. New developments…Kaine signs off on debate conditions he agreed to a month ago, and Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce endorses Kilgore for governor…

  23. Not Thomas Stanley:

    I don’t know if you are implying that Jerry Kilgore is a homosexual, but if you are, please stop. That’s wrong. Beinga homosexual is exactly like being a criminal. It’s wrong and it’s evil. So you see, that’s why I get so pissed when people call Jerry Kilgore a homosexual – because in my mind, homosexual = creeping menace that is threatning to destroy this nation.

    Stop calling him a homosexual because he’s not and I think it’s despicable when people call Jerry Kilgore a homosexual.

  24. Cut the Crap,

    You are being tongue in cheek right?

    You’re right. It IS denegrating to our brave men and women in uniform to compare them to Jerry Kilgore. I apologize.

    And for the millionth time: NO. I’m not insinuating that Kilgore is gay. I’m accusing him of being a weak little sissy. If he was gay then he could be electable. Y’all Republicans darn near picked David Drier for your new House majority leader after Delay was indicted. You know, David Drier the gay homosexual Republican congressman who lives with his chief of staff?

    Plus you’ve got Ken Mehlman for a national party chair. He likes the penises.

    Clearly, gayness would not be a problem. So why would we be accusing him of that? The trouble is the FACT that Jerry Kilgore is a weak, effeminate sissy and a coward who cannot properly be called a man.

  25. MY god. MY GOD. I cannot believe you just implied that Ken MehlMan is a gay homosexual. That is an outrage and I will not stand for it.

    You, good sir, must cease and desist. Jerry Kilgore is not a homosexual, and he does not enjoy the type of painful intercourse that homosexuals enjoy.

    This is getting out of control. I don’t know if I can handle writing on these blogs anymore. The kind of hateful rhetoric that’s being thrown around is just sickening. I’m going to jump off a bridge now.

  26. > “quelle heure est-il”???
    > Jerry doesn’t know what time it is?

    yeah, he’s like the opposite of Flavor Flav.

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