Mayoral candidates barred from debate speak out

73-year-old Opal Covey is running for the fourth time for mayor of Toledo. She says she will transform the Glass City into a tourist attraction if she wins. "From the beginning God has ordained this city to be a resort vacation area and the first thing I am going to do is to install an amusement park in Promenade Park," Ms. Covey said. Covey who is running as a Republican along with independent candidate Alan Cox and the Libertarian Party's Michael Konwinski have been barred from the Toledo Blade debate set for September 4, just 6 days before the September 10 primary. "It doesn't surprise me, the snakes of Toledo have shown their faces again," Ms. Covey said.

Cox , who is president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 2058, says he worked hard to accumulate the required signatures to get on the ballot and thus should have been invited to the Blade debate. "It's very disappointing, it seems to me that if you are going to have a fair and objective election then everybody should be included," Mr. Cox said.

Michael Konwinski is making his first run at elective office. Last December he retired after working for the city of Toledo for 30 years. Like Covey and Cox he is disappointed at getting shut out of the Blade debate. "It's frustrating and I realize it's a private company and they can do whatever they want but I think it would be better for the overall campaign if all of the opinions were there," Mr. Konwinski said.

WNWO and the Toledo Free Press are jointly sponsoring a forum for all of the candidates for mayor. It is scheduled for Monday August 26th.