No cameras in debate after Spratt's request

U.S. Rep. John Spratt

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- U.S. Rep. John Spratt will debate his Republican challenger Mick Mulvaney on Tuesday, but the only people who will get to see any of it have already bought tickets to the sold out dinner at a South Carolina Lions Club.

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Reporters will be allowed, but Spratt's campaign asked for no audio or video recording of the debate between the candidates.

Mulvaney's campaign protested the request when agreeing to the debate, then sent out a news release Monday slamming Spratt saying "in this country, we have open debates."

It's the latest indication that Republicans see a good chance to knock off Spratt, the longest serving congressman in the South Carolina delegation and chairman of the House's budget-writing committee.

Spratt was first elected to the sprawling Fifth District in 1982.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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