Parkinson declines to debate on KVEC

September 22, 2010

After considering the invitation for two weeks, Sheriff’s candidate Ian Parkinson has decided not to debate opponent Joe Cortez on KVEC radio.

KVEC news director King Harris had been attempting to bring the two candidates together for a forum on the San Luis Obispo news/talk station. Cortez, a former Pismo Beach police chief, accepted immediately.

Parkinson, currently a captain with San Luis Police Department, eventually demurred. In an email to KVEC, Parkinson talked about his “tight schedule,” referred to two other debates that would be televised, and said:

“Once these debates are completed I will have done approximately 24 debates/forums as a candidate for Sheriff.  As I have told the others, I feel that the 24 debates/forums have provided the voters with excellent opportunities to determine which candidate they would vote for as our next Sheriff.  In addition to these two scheduled debates, I have chosen to direct most of the balance of my time in the campaign to other campaign activities such as meeting with voters one-on-one. I find these meetings to be most productive for myself and the voter.”

Cortez and Parkinson are scheduled to appear in mid-October on KSBY. They will also participate in a forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters on Sept. 29.

“I think Capt. Parkinson is taking a page from the Sam Blakeslee playbook,” said KVEC talk show host Dave Congalton. “He’s trying to protect his lead and avoid giving any unnecessary  opportunity to his opponent. That’s smart, politically. And he probably didn’t want a repeat of what happened last time he was on KVEC.”

In a KVEC interview last May, responding to a question from a caller, Parkinson vehemently denied having had any tax liens placed on his property. News stories later revealed that Parkinson had six liens filed over ten years.



  1. surfdawg says:

    I think this thread is hysterical. The Cortez camp’s empty attacks, in association with Karen’s knack for going to press without fact-checking have just been countered by actual reporting by New Times. It looks like Cortez tried to go the route of the disgraced Police Chief from the City of Bell. He apparently appealed his denied application for a medical retirement, just like the crook from Bell who tried the same thing with the City of Glendale. For those of you good citizens who don’t know this scam, if granted a medical retirement those shinging stars like Cortez and the former Chief of Bell would get their pensions TAX FREE…It looks to me a like a little more than a chink in the armor.

    BTW, the event at Embassy Suites was a debate, did you know that Joe left Califiornia a sergeant, took a Chief’s job at a “Mayberry-Like” department in Colorado and didn’t have a degree for 5 years? Someone has been throwing rocks in the glass house for a bit longer than he should have.

    God love American democracy, we live in a small enough community where we can actually get off of our butts and sit down with the candidates, asking them tough questions directly, and not having to rely on yellow journalism!

    Have a great remainder of week!

    (0) 6 Total Votes - 3 up - 3 down
  2. accountnumber says:

    The DEBATE that was to happen this Wednesday night at the Embassy Suites between Cortez and Parkinson, has been changed to a FORUM setting.. This was going to be a great opportunity to hear both candidates answer tough questions, but now all you’ll hear from Parkinson, is what he’s been programed to say. That’s why the debate was going to be so very valuable to the undecided voter. Very disappointing.

    (3) 7 Total Votes - 5 up - 2 down
    • SLOBIRD says:

      Well, is any informed people surprised. I think not. Parkinson is not capable of handling a “Debate” because brother won’t be there. A debate is a debate, a debate is what we want to see/hear, a debate is what is needed for the voter, what is he afraid of. Another family vote for Cortez, three of us!

      (2) 4 Total Votes - 3 up - 1 down
  3. sunnyhaven says:

    Well, for the handful of us local residents of this county who can not get any local TV channels,
    my family (6 voters) will vote for Cortez. The only way I get local news is on radio or internet,
    & I didn’t know too much about the candidates. So anyone who is too afraid of the radio format is not the kind of sheriff that I want for our county. I can’t believe the difference between education & experience that Cortez has compared to the lack of education & Experience that Parkinson has.

    (5) 9 Total Votes - 7 up - 2 down
  4. Crusader says:

    Cortez and Parkinson are supposed to “debate” this coming Thursday at 6:00PM at the Embassy Suites in SLO. The debate is sponsored by the SLOC Sheriff’s Advisory Council…

    (-3) 3 Total Votes - 0 up - 3 down
    • calzoni says:

      Wednesday’s “debate” at the Embassey Suites has been changed to a “forum.” There is another forum scheduled for Thursday in Morro Bay but I’m told that Parkinson will not be there.

      (3) 3 Total Votes - 3 up - 0 down
  5. Crusader says:

    If Ian Parkinson looked physically different — let’s say he looked like Pat Hedges or Steve Bolts, would he even be in the running for sheriff right now, everything else being the same?

    I seriously doubt it. He doesn’t seem to have enough substance for what he aspires to.

    He’s a good-looking guy but he’s also an empty suit. He would get eaten alive out there on Kansas Ave…

    (7) 29 Total Votes - 18 up - 11 down
  6. slojo says:

    I would rather see them debate on T.V………Parkinson is HOT.

    (-18) 24 Total Votes - 3 up - 21 down
    • Sandra says:

      Dear Slojo:

      HOT does not get the job done. I hope some gray cells will kick in before the elections!

      (4) 6 Total Votes - 5 up - 1 down
  7. SLOBIRD says:

    Just look at the facts taken from each ones campaign page:


    1) experience
    – 36 years all levels – 24 years
    – highest level – Police Chief – highest level – Captain
    – Police Chief 15 years – Captain (years not listed)

    – University Degree – none listed
    – military veteran – none listed
    – Graduate FBI Academy – none listed
    – FEMA cerified in disaster mgmt – none listed
    * note: he is working on a on-line course
    to get his degree
    *note: he is teaching a class at Allen Hancock
    Community College for police managment
    3) endorsements
    – CDF firefighters Association – SLO County Deputy Sheriffs Association
    – Pismo Beach Police Officers Assoc – none listed
    – 6 councilmembers (cur & ret) – 8 councilmembers (cur & ret)
    – 7 mayors (cur & ret) – 5 mayors (cur & ret)
    – 9 police chiefs (cur & ret) – 4 police chiefs (cur & ret)
    – CHP Area Commander (ret) – none listed
    – CHP Division Chief (ret) – none listed

    In review the data on line for both candidates I have made the following conclusions:

    Joe Cortez is the best qualitfies
    Joe Cortez has not won the endoresement of Sheriff’s Deputies (a good thing)
    Joes Cortez did not have obvious endorsements from 61 Sheriff’s Dept employees from file clerks, Under Sheriff, Senior deputies, etc. With a dept of 377 employees, that is about 20%.

    I don’t know about others in this County, but this dept is a mess. We need honest, integrity, transparency and someone with not ties or comments to the employees. GO JOE!!!!!

    (10) 30 Total Votes - 20 up - 10 down

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