Gov. Scott Walker said he will participate in two debates before the June 5 recall election even though his Democratic rival Tom Barrett wants him to do four.
Walker said Wednesday he would participate in televised debates on May 25 and May 31. The first is sponsored by The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association and the second will be hosted by Mike Gousha from WISN-TV in partnership with the Marquette University Law School, Wispolitics.com, and the WISN network of affiliates.
Walker's campaign spokesman Ciara Matthews said the governor looks forward to the debates and having a "robust" discussion contrasting his record with Barrett.
"Gov. Walker is excited to discuss the positive effects that the bold reforms put in place last year have brought to the people of Wisconsin and how those reforms are moving the state forward," said Matthews.
Barrett said he's agreed to also do a debate on June 3 in Brown Deer sponsored by the League of Women Voters and another at an undetermined date sponsored by Wisconsin Public Television and Radio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and WTMJ-TV.
Walker's press release said the two debates he's chosen to participate in would run statewide and would provide the largest available audience of voters in Wisconsin.
Barrett on Wednesday called on Walker to focus all of the debates on the issue of jobs.
Jobs and the economy have been a major focus of the recall campaign, with both sides using different numbers to make their cases.
Walker points to the state's unemployment rate, which is the lowest it's been since 2008.
But Barrett points out that Wisconsin lost more jobs than any other state between March 2011 and March 2012.
Walker has also taken Barrett to task for Milwaukee's 10.4 percent unemployment. Barrett has been mayor of Milwaukee since 2004.