Sharice Davids pulled out of a scheduled appearance at a Johnson County Bar Association luncheon Wednesday morning hours after Rep. Kevin Yoder announced he planned to attend the forum in person.
As of Monday, the Bar Association was promoting Davids as a featured speaker at the event, which will be moderated by John Holt of WDAF. Rep. Kevin Yoder was initially not thought to be able to attend in person because of scheduled votes in the House today. But when those votes were canceled, his office announced Tuesday night that he would be at the forum in person.
Tracey DeMarea of the Bar Association said earlier this morning that the organization was “waiting for confirmation” that Davids would show as scheduled.
Around 9:15 a.m., Davids campaign spokesperson Allison Teixeira Sulier issued the following statement saying she would no longer be participating in the Bar Association forum:
“Sharice looks forward to debating Kevin Yoder on the important issues facing Kansans, that’s why we have agreed to a televised debate hosted by the KC Star on October 29. Rep. Yoder still has not accepted this invitation and instead is playing last minute games and trying to hide behind ticketed events, closed to the majority of Kansans. After voting to raise healthcare premiums, gut protections for pre-existing conditions and raise taxes on middle class families it’s no surprise that Rep. Yoder is resorting to political ploys instead of trying to defend his dangerous record.”
Davids had initially agreed to make remarks to the crowd and then accept a series of questions from the moderator. The campaign indicated it was uncomfortable with the change in format to something closer to a traditional debate so close to the event time.
Yoder’s office has frequently attacked Davids for her failure to appear at similar events, including the Kansas City Kansas Chamber Congressional Forum last month.
“Yoder has agreed to participate in six debates,” campaign spokesman CJ Grover said in a statement announcing the Congressman’s participation in the Bar Association event. “So far, Davids has skipped the Kansas City Kansas Chamber Congressional Forum, breaking a 50-year tradition, and has refused to participate in the other four Yoder has agreed to…”