Debate Moderator Threatened After Omitting Pledge

Issue inflames hard-core conservatives

By Marcus Riley
|  Friday, Oct 29, 2010  |  Updated 6:06 PM CDT
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Political debates are known to get contentious, but the moderator of the debate between Democratic Rep. Melissa Bean and her Republican challenger Joe Walsh is the one feeling the heat.

The Chicago Tribune reports that retired teacher Kathy Tate-Bradish has been receiving threats online and via the telephone after she didn't include the Pledge of Allegiance in the League of Women Voters forum earlier this month in Grayslake.

A man interrupted the debate and demanded the pledge be recited, and after Tate-Bradish, the crowd booed and said the pledge anyway, the newspaper reported.

Tea Party supporter Glenn Beck criticized the League of Women Voters and Tate-Bradish on his Fox News show this week and the issue has taken on a life of its own in online forums.

The executive director of the Illinois League of Women Voters, Jan Czarnik, said she's notified the FBI about death threats directed toward her and Tate-Bradish, according to the Tribune.

The Tea Party has thrown its support behind Walsh in the Illinois 8th District race.

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