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Cotton says won't

debate Harrington

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., does not plan to debate his Libertarian opponent, Ricky Dale Harrington of Pine Bluff, a Cotton spokesman said last week.

Asked for a comment on the decision, Cotton's campaign issued a written statement stating: "Tom Cotton is hard at work in the Senate confirming conservative judges and standing up to the radical left. He's already enjoying spending time on the campaign trail when the Senate is in recess, and looks forward to making his case to Arkansans across our state before this November's election."

The only Democrat who filed to run against Cotton, Josh Mahony of Fayetteville, dropped out of the race less than three hours after the filing deadline.

As a result, the party was unable to select someone to run in Mahony's place.

Harrington, who has accepted Arkansas PBS' invitation to debate, said he'll show up for the Oct. 14 televised forum, regardless of what Cotton does.

"I'm a little disappointed that he's refusing to participate in a bedrock of our constitutional democratic republic, which is a debate for public officials," Harrington said. "I will be there. I will use that time to try to engage with the people of Arkansas."

Biden backs Elliott

in U.S. House bid

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden endorsed state Sen. Joyce Elliott, D-Little Rock, last week, supporting her bid to unseat Republican U.S. Rep. French Hill of Little Rock.

"Joyce Elliott's decades teaching in public schools and serving in the Arkansas Legislature have proved she can work with folks from all backgrounds to lower healthcare costs, invest in our students, and help build a fairer economy for all. I am proud to endorse her campaign for Congress," Biden said in a written statement that was released Wednesday.

Elliott's campaign quickly informed potential donors of the development, telling them in an email: "Vice President Biden knows our race is one of the closest in the nation. That's why he's throwing his full support behind our movement for change."

In a written statement, Elliott said she was "humbled" to have Biden's endorsement.

"It is an honor to work with him so we can restore the soul of our nation and build back better from our current crisis," she said.

Asked whether he would like to receive an endorsement from President Donald Trump, Hill said he already has the White House's backing.

"I know President Trump supports my reelection because he supports a Republican House of Representatives, and that's how it was in 2018, I'm sure," Hill said. "I think he'd like to see a Republican speaker of the House on the first week of January in 2021," Hill added.

Harvard: Stewart

a fall fellow again

The Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School has selected CNN political commentator Alice Stewart -- again -- as one of its fall fellows.

Unlike last year, when she lived on campus, she'll be teaching the class remotely this time.

"I had my first study group Monday -- my guests were Mark McKinnon and Jennifer Palmieri from 'The Circus' on Showtime," the former Little Rock resident said in a text message.

McKinnon worked on George W. Bush's White House bids.

Palmieri served as communications director for Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign.

Students had plenty of questions, asking about mail-in voting, racial tensions and the tone of political discourse, Stewart said.

Teaching online is an adjustment.

"The energy on campus at Harvard is so special, so it is a big change to conduct everything at the Institute of Politics remotely. I miss the face-to-face interaction with the smart students and my Harvard colleagues, but virtual is the next best thing to being there these days. Everyone is adapting," Stewart said in an email.

Originally from Georgia, Stewart lived in Arkansas for about 17 years, as a journalist at KARK-TV, a radio talk show host, a deputy secretary of state and an aide to then-Gov. Mike Huckabee.

Over the years, she also served as a presidential campaign spokesman for Huckabee; former U.S. Sens. Rick Santorum, R-Pa.; U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas; and former U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.

"I'm a little old for this online era, so I am relying on my student team for ideas to keep things interactive, educational and engaging," Stewart wrote.

Planning to visit the nation's capital? Know something happening in Washington, D.C.? Please contact Frank Lockwood at (202) 662-7690 or flockwood@arkansasonline.com. Want the latest from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's Washington bureau? It's available on Twitter, @LockwoodFrank.

Print Headline: Washington news in brief

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