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updated: 2/7/2014 4:20 PM

Quinn won't debate Hardiman

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Associated Press

Gov. Pat Quinn won't debate his lone Democratic challenger ahead of next month's primary.

Activist Tio Hardiman wrote Quinn a letter requesting debates ahead of March 18, saying the public "deserves a serious debate."

Quinn campaign spokeswoman Leslie Wertheimer said Friday she hadn't seen the letter but no debates were to "take place."

Hardiman, a Hillside resident, faces an uphill battle.

Records for the most recent quarter show Quinn's campaign has $4.5 million in the bank, compared with $550 for Hardiman, who's mostly self-financed.

He's been active in anti-violence efforts but doesn't have statewide name recognition or party backing.

Hardiman insists he'll run a credible campaign.

The Republican gubernatorial candidates are participating in numerous debates. They are Treasurer Dan Rutherford, businessman Bruce Rauner and state Sens. Kirk Dillard and Bill Brady.

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