Kashkari accepts debate invitations, awaits word from Brown

Kashkari accepts debate invitations, awaits word from Brown
Republican candidate for governor, Neel Kashkari, speaks at the Sacramento Press Club in March. He is challenging Gov. Jerry Brown to 10 debates. (Rich Pedroncelli / AP)

Republican gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari, who earlier challenged Gov. Jerry Brown to a series of 10 debates around California, said Friday that he accepted a debate invitation from two television stations in San Diego.

Brown has not yet responded to Kashkari's challenge, which was identical to one Brown made in 2010 to then-GOP gubernatorial nominee Meg Whitman.

"As Gov. Brown stated four years ago, Neel believes it is critical for voters to hear directly from both candidates about their plans to address the big challenges facing our state, including how they intend to create good jobs and improve our schools," said Kashkari campaign manager Pat Melton. "Given Gov. Brown's failure to respond to Neel's challenge, however, our campaign is moving forward to accept debate invitations."

Kashkari made the challenge on the radio two days after the June 3 primary, and his campaign formally requested the debates in a letter to Brown's campaign on Monday, asking for a response by Friday.

Brown's campaign has not committed to a debate.

Earlier Friday, Dan Newman, a spokesman for Brown told The Times that they would "try and work something out - assuming they don't insist on only right-wing shock jocks to host again," a reference to the sole GOP primary debate, which was moderated by the talk-radio hosts of KFI's "The John and Ken Show."

The debate Kashkari agreed to would be hosted by KGTV and KPBS in San Diego, and shared with ABC and public-television affiliates around the state. A time and venue have not been determined.

Twitter: @LATSeema