July 7, 2022

‘Debate’ Held With Republicans, No Democrats; Eric Parker Served as Question Master

OLD LYME — Monday night’s planned debate was reformatted to an event featuring only the Republican candidates after a major misunderstanding occurred as to whether or not the debate had been cancelled.

Ann Reiter, campaign manager for the Democrats, stated in an email sent Monday at 11:52 a.m., “… unfortunately our (the Democrats) understanding yesterday [Sunday] at 2pm was that the debate was cancelled because of several reasons, the main being that we did not have a moderator and neither Vicki [Lanier] or I had any prospects for a moderator.  At that point we (the Democrats) notified our supporters and candidates that the debate was cancelled.  I was not available last night and did not receive news about Eric Parker’s possible participation until very late last night. We were disappointed to cancel the event and Vicki and I both agreed that if we are the campaign managers for the town committees again in two years, we would work together starting in September to create a fair and well-planned event.”

Victoria Lanier, campaign manager for the Republicans, countered in an email sent Monday at 11:57 a.m., “Anna Reiter … confirmed that the Democratic candidates will not be attending the scheduled debate this [Monday] evening at the LOLMS.  Her reasoning was that she claimed to me that “we agreed to cancel the debate”.  To be perfectly clear – there was never an agreement to cancel the debate.  Rather, she informed me yesterday [Sunday] via telephone (rather than email) at about 2pm that her candidates wouldn’t be at the debate because we didn’t have a confirmed moderator.
The Republican candidates will go forward. Eric Parker [of Channel 3 News*] will ask questions of the Republican candidates that will be supplied to him in a sealed envelope when he arrives at Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School.”

Parker took the role of question master in a personal capacity not as a representative of Channel 3 News.

The questions were a combination of those submitted to CT Examiner and LymeLine.

Visit this link for a recording of the event. The recording was supplied by the Old Lyme Republicans.



  1. Charlotte Scot says

    The date, time, place, and moderator should have been chosen a month ago. The event should have occurred at least two weeks before the election.
    As I followed the lack of progress for scheduling the event, it became obvious that someone (no fingers pointed) did not want a public debate on the issues.
    I am registered as “unaffiliated,” and I am angry that I was cheated out of a frank discussion of issues because Democrats and Republicans in my town could not reach an agreement to debate. In a democracy, you run for office and you debate. Even Presidential candidates do this. Do Old Lyme politicians feel that they are too important to discuss the issues with us?
    To add fuel to the fire, the RTC hosted a “fake debate” the night before the election. What was that all about?
    In the future, we need someone responsible to schedule these events. Someone who is not associated with a political party.