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Rocky and Hannity Poised to Face Off

Rocky and Hannity Poised to Face Off

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

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(KSL Newsradio/TV Team Coverage)

A Rocky Anderson-Sean Hannity debate over presidential impeachment and the war in Iraq could still happen. But details about where and when it might happen are far from final right now. At the same time, a lot of people are starting to look forward to the event.

Both Rocky and Hannity have agreed to a debate. Now, comes organizing such an event. And for that, we're in uncharted territory, since no one has stepped forward to commit to that yet.

Professor Tim Chambless at the U's Hinckley Institute of Politics says a Rocky-Hannity debate would be a good thing for the city, the state, and even the nation.

Tim Chambless, Hinckley Institute of Politics: "I think the public benefits from exposure to the issues. And to have the contrast between a national conservative talk show host and a mayor from a relatively rural state with a contrasting view point."

And, in fact, both conservatives and liberals are looking forward to a personal Rocky-Hannity face off. The challenge came after Rocky was invited, then disinvited to appear on Hannity's TV show.

He reacted this way.

Rocky Anderson: "We've put a lot into this. We've got it written up, and Hannity saw that he was going to have a tough time tonight, and they cancelled it."

During Hannity's radio show Thursday, a caller relayed the information, sparking the challenge.

Sean Hannity (from radio show): "I will fly out to Salt Lake City at my own expense, for charity, and I will debate the merits of the war, impeachment, and have the liberal-conservative debate of our time."

The debate challenge seems to have sparked a lot of emotion from fans of both Hannity and Rocky. Among them, some are wondering if it is appropriate for Anderson to take on this issue. Chambless says it is.

Tim Chambless: "Issues are not mutually exclusive between local issues, and national federal issues, and global international issues."

And, as far as running the city, Anderson says he makes time for that and his public appearances.

Rocky Anderson: "I've been working seven days a week for 14 hours a day. We've got a great team; we're attending to all of the city's business."

Hannity says he's worried Rocky would want too many rules and restrictions, but the mayor says not to worry about that.

Salt Lake City Mayor Anderson: "Hannity lives off of nastiness and hatefulness, but I think it's time that he come into a forum where he is going to have to face the facts."

On the Doug Wright Show on KSL Newsradio, Anderson agreed to some basic ground rules.

Mayor Anderson: "If we had a moderator, and the idea of asking questions of each other, I think that would be OK."

Sean Hannity says he just needs a date for the debate.

Sean Hannity: "Let's make this very, very simple. He gets an allotted amount of time. I get an allotted amount of time."

Hannity tells the Doug Wright Show he wants questions to be allowed.

Sean Hannity: "This is important because I've got a lot of very important questions that I think need to be asked which go to the heart of all of this."

Hannity says he'd like young people to be there, perhaps in a university setting.

He tells KSL he'll even let Mayor Anderson get the first and last word.

Anderson believes the president is guilty of abusing power, lying to Congress about the reason for the war and of violating several international treaties. Hannity says Anderson is a left-wing liberal who is unpatriotic. With that, the battle lines are drawn.

No date has been set yet for a much ballyhooed debate between Rocky Anderson and Sean Hannity. The question is still if and when it will happen. We'll keep you posted.

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