Edwards Offers Negative Campaign Truce; Taylor Declines

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In an interview with News 3, Democratic Congressman Chet Edwards made an offer to Republican candidate Van Taylor to end the negative political ad campaigning.

"I would offer to Mr. Taylor to take down all of our television ads and from here forward, run nothing but positive ads about what we're going to do for this country, and what we believe we can do, positively, for our district," Edwards said.

Late Wednesday afternoon, Taylor's campaign manager, Casey Phillips, made the following statement:

"To me, this offer really reminds me of a school yard bully backing down from a fight once someone holds their ground against them. This guy has made a living of tearing his opponents apart, and he's got more than he can handle on his hands right now. The people of Central Texas deserve to know his voting record."

In response, Edwards expressed his disappointment, and said voters now know who insists on running negative ads.

On Saturday, News 3 interviewed Taylor here in Bryan. A similar interview was conducted Tuesday with Edwards in Waco.

It has turned into a brawl for District 17's congressional seat. Taylor says he has focused his town-to-town efforts on promoting his views.

"That's where I spend most of my time focusing and thinking about," he said. There is a contrast between myself and the congressman and his record on immigration, and we're highlighting that contrast."

And contrasts have highlighted the conflict between the two, Taylor attacking Edwards on possible flip-flops and inconsistencies, Edwards countering with congressional records and quick jabs at the former Marine.

"If a candidate doesn't respond to very serious and misleading charges, then people will be misled on those issues," Edwards said.

"I think it's important to set the record straight and to tell people exactly what someone's record is," Taylor said. "I think when you're making a factual statement about how someone has voted in the past, that's a factual statement about how someone has voted in the past."

Edwards continues to call for an end to negativity.

"I hope the average voter is as turned off by negative campaigning as I am," he said. "I think voters prefer, and I certainly prefer ads that are talking about what we believe we can do for our district and our country."

"I don't know about all this spin and politics stuff," Taylor said. "What I do know is the truth, and that's all I can do when running for office is to tell the truth."

Whether it's negative, factual, both or neither, there is no doubt the District 17 race has heated up.

Chet Edwards' campaign website can be found at http://www.chetedwards.com

Van Taylor's campaign website can be found at http://www.vantaylor.com

This Saturday, Chet Edwards and Van Taylor will meet face to face in our candidates forum. That will be live on KBTX Saturday starting at 7 p.m. More information can be found at the following link: http://www.kbtx.com/unclassified/4305212.html