CHICAGO (CBS) — With the Illinois primary just about a month away, Gov. Pat Quinn’s sole Democratic challenger went to the governor’s home, seeking to force a debate.

WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports no one was home at Quinn’s house when Tio Hardiman showed up with a letter, asking for a face-to-face meeting in front of voters before the March 18 primary.

Hardiman, the former head of the anti-violence group CeaseFire, said Quinn has ignored his repeated requests for a debate.

“He needs to be put in a position to defend his record in the state of Illinois,” Hardiman said.

He also said it’s hypocritical for a governor who preaches good government to dodge debate in his bid for re-election.

“The people of Illinois deserve a debate. That’s all I’m asking for,” Hardiman said. “It’s okay for Tio Hardiman to run for governor. Governor Quinn filed 31 objections to my nominating petitions, but he’s scared to have a debate with me. What’s really going on?”

Hardiman noted the governor did debate challenger Dan Hynes in the 2010 election, and once called former Gov. George Ryan a coward for refusing a debate when Quinn was running against Ryan in the race for Secretary of State in 1994.

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