Contact: Josh Whitfield (209) 985-1784


Finally agrees to a date with the Modesto Bee the same day.

MODESTO, CA – In a weak attempt to mislead voters about debates, Harder tweeted that a debate had been set with the Turlock Journal two weeks ago and he has accepted. The Turlock Journal responded in their own tweet stating that any potential debate remained in the early stages and that they were still speaking to both campaigns.

“It’s sad to keep seeing these types of dishonest tactics from Josh Harder,” said Joshua Whitfield – Denham’s Campaign Manager. “There is no other way to describe it other than a lie and Mr. Harder got caught”

Denham’s campaign said they have been talking about a debate with the Turlock Journal and others, but the two campaigns have yet to agree on any terms outside of the Modesto Bee debate. The Denham campaign has been committed to holding public debates with invited media to live stream or televise for the interested public. Each campaign would get an equal amount of tickets based on the capacity of the debate venue, there would be no signs, attendees would have equal opportunity to ask questions, and hecklers and unruly attendees would be dismissed. Harder’s campaign has rejected this framework and skipped two debates under this format with The House and the San Joaquin County Farm Bureau. Denham attended those debates and held open town halls after Harder failed to show. Notably, Harder skipped the Farm Bureau debate and the Water Rally on the same day.

At this point, Harder has missed two debate opportunities with The House Church in Modesto and the San Joaquin County Farm Bureau. Harder also backed out of attending the Modesto Rotary Club candidate forum and walked away from a Spanish language debate with the St. Frances of Rome Parish in Riverbank.

“I think it’s telling that he’s attending the Modesto Bee since they’ve already endorsed him, but refused the San Joaquin Farm Bureau just because they endorsed us. And add that to flat out lying about the Turlock Journal shows he’s not fit to represent the Valley,” added Joshua Whitfield. “If he is serious he will come back to the table on the Modesto Rotary and Spanish language debates, and accept a reasonable debate environment so the public can learn about the candidates, until then we will be at an impasse.”

The Denham Campaign stated that the Congressman would follow through on his commitment to debate at the Modesto Bee despite Harder dragging his feet on accepting a date and pointed out it would have been awkward for Harder to back out of the Bee debate because they already endorsed him. Yesterday Harder agreed to September 20th at 3:30 PM for a live-streamed debate with the Modesto Bee.

For more information, contact Josh Whitfield at (209)-985-1784

Election day is November 6th, 2018. You can learn more about Congressman Jeff Denham and his campaign by visiting