Does Gov. Kay Ivey need to participate in gubernatorial debates?

Does Gov. Kay Ivey need to participate in gubernatorial debates?
(Source: WBRC Video)

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - Governor Kay Ivey taking the mound at Regions Field throwing out the first pitch Thursday at the Barons game.

Afterwards, she didn't take any questions from reporters specifically about why she's not taking part in debates for governor. Ivey told WBRC Wednesday, she's too busy being governor.

"My schedule is full a long way out in advance and so my first job, of my time has to be to govern and I'm doing that and so campaigns are free to run their campaigns any way they want to but I can't stop and drop what I'm doing, we have hurricanes, we have storms. Things come up and I'm just trying to be an effective governor, do my job," Ivey said Wednesday.

Earlier this month, Ivey said she's happy to discuss her record with reporters. Political analyst Paul DeMarco says Ivey may not have much to lose by not taking part in debates.

"It's not unheard of somebody who's leading in the polls to say hey I'm not going to gain as much benefit from participating as the risk of not participating," said DeMarco, a former Republican state representative.

DeMarco feels some voters may have already made up their minds about the election. He says only time will tell.

"She's saying look I'm here to answer your questions. I just don't need to participate with these other folks. They need it. I don't need it. They're the challengers, They don't have the name ID. From a pure political, she's saying hey this doesn't benefit me. It benefits my opponents. I'm in the middle of a campaign to win would I do anything to benefit my opponents," DeMarco said.

DeMarco says Ivey has a lot of name recognition and that may work in her favor when voters go to the polls in June primary elections.

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