City Councilman and Warsaw mayoral candidate Ron Shoemaker has officially declined to participate in the Warsaw Mayoral Candidate Debate on April 11.
He sent his response via email to News Now Warsaw on Sunday, March 24. This came after organizers had reached out to him February 25, March 11, and March 22 to see if he would be willing to meet in person to discuss the event.
“Despite best efforts, we have been unable to negotiate terms acceptable to all parties,” Councilman Shoemaker’s email reads. “I decline your most recent offer due to you orchestrating this event without my commitment.”
Both candidates were invited to participate after they filed candidacy. News Now Warsaw moved forward with plans to book the venue, schedule the panelists, and begin collecting questions from the community on January 23 after reaching out to Councilman Shoemaker several times about the debate.
After the date was set, the mayoral candidate had asked News Now Warsaw to add a panelist from Ink Free News and to involve the Republican Party in the debate planning process– both requests that they immediately accommodated.
Councilman Shoemaker also requested that all City Council candidates be invited to participate in the debate– a request that organizers felt was logistically not possible due to the event only being two hours in length.
Incumbent Mayor Joe Thallemer has confirmed he will be attending the Warsaw Mayoral Candidate Debate.
Two podiums will still be available on stage at Lakeview Middle School on Thursday April 11 at 6 p.m.
News Now Warsaw wants to ensure Councilman Shoemaker’s spot at the debate is still available should he decide he wants to attend and answer questions written by community members.