The Libertarian Party candidate for U.S. Senate in Virginia will be on the ballot this fall, but Robert Sarvis is not invited to debate next month when the other two contenders face-off.
According to PilotOnline.com, Virginia State Board of Elections official said Thursday that Sarvis has been certified to be on the Nov. 4 ballot along with U.S. Senator Mark Warner, a Democrat, and Ed Gillespie, the Republican challenger.
Organizers of the debate, the Virginia Bar Association, decided to only invite Warner and Gillespie to the first debate scheduled for July 26 at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, W. Va.
“They are the only candidates who qualify under our criteria for invitations,” association President John L. Walker III said in an email to PilotOnline.
The group’s debate rules include only candidates that “have a reasonable chance of being elected.”
Sarvis was also excluded from the debate for governor last year. He received 145,762 votes, 6.5 percent of votes cast.
Sarvis said that now that he’s on the ballot, he’ll ask the bar association to reconsider.
“I have to ask: Is 145,000 votes not significant to them? How many people watched their debate?” he said.