A congressional debate that won't happen

Michael San Nicolas Robert Underwood

For the seasoned politician Robert Underwood, getting the incumbent Guam delegate Michael San Nicolas to face him in a debate is like pulling teeth.

Since the beginning of the campaign, the former congressman has repeatedly tried to summon San Nicolas into a public arena, but the young first-term delegate won't leave his comfort zone, opting to respond via social media instead.

The two Democrats are jockeying for the congressional seat in a runoff that will be concluded on Nov. 17. Absentee voting begins today.

Underwood on Sunday announced he has accepted an invitation from KUAM to debate San Nicolas tentatively set for Nov. 12.

"We hope that this debate will afford the people of Guam the opportunity to make comparisons between the candidates. We welcome this opportunity to appear live before the voters of Guam," said Underwood, the retired president of the University of Guam.

A veteran of public speaking who served in Congress from 1993 to 2003, Underwood said it is "an obligation for candidates to participate in unscripted forums."

The voters, he added, must be given an opportunity "to compare the plans, knowledge and, records of those who aspire to represent us in Washington D.C.”