Hillary Clinton’s campaign accused the campaign of her opponent, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), of playing “political games” by failing to hammer down a date for a debate ahead of New York’s April 19 primary.
“The Sanders campaign needs to stop using the New York primary as a playground for political games and negative attacks against Hillary Clinton,” Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon said in a statement on Saturday. “The voters of New York deserve better.”
Clinton’s camp claims to have offered three possible dates for the New York debate—April 4, April 14, and April 15—and been rebuffed each time.
Sanders’ spokesman Michael Briggs fired back in a statement of his own on Saturday afternoon, charging that the suggested venues and dates “don’t make a whole lot of sense.”
“The idea that they want a debate in New York on a night of the NCAA finals—with Syracuse in the tournament no less—is ludicrous,” Briggs wrote. “We have proposed other dates which they have rejected.”
The NCAA men’s basketball tournament is scheduled for April 4, but NBC reported that the Clinton team claimed to have offered a time that would ensure the debate ended before the game started that evening.
Sanders, a Brooklyn native, first challenged Clinton to debate in his home state last week. Clinton, who served as a senator for the Empire State and is polling ahead of Sanders there, agreed on Tuesday.
Both camps say they are committed to reaching an agreement on a face-off in New York.