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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Max Linn will join debate tonight



Max Linn, the hard-charging Reform Party candidate from Treasure Island, will be allowed to participate in Monday night's gubernatorial debate, a federal judge ruled Monday evening.

Linn should be able to join the debate between candidates Charlie Crist and Jim Davis, which was to begin at 7 p.m. at television station WFLA-TV in Tampa, said U.S. District Judge James Whittemore.

Linn and his supporters argued he met the criteria set out by WFLA for participation in the debate by producing an independent poll that showed he had 7 percent support among Floridians. Lawyers for WFLA argued the poll was not independent because Linn paid for it. But Whittemore said WFLA never explained what it meant by "independent" and ruled in Linn's favor. 

Whittemore reached his decision just 20 minutes before the debate was scheduled to start. "Mr. Linn, you better get going," Whittemore said as Linn rushed from the courtroom.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 11:35am]


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