There will be no debate in Jefferson County among the four Republican candidates for the 9th Congressional District because one, Mike Sodrel, declined an invitation from the Madison Area Chamber of Commerce.

Sodrel has turned down several invitations from other places and accepted only one, a debate Saturday, April 10, in North Vernon.

A Sodrel campaign spokesman told the Louisville Courier-Journal that Sodrel's schedule is very tight.

David Collier, executive vice president of the Madison Area Chamber of Commerce, said this morning that the chamber's governmental affairs committee offered 10 dates, but Sodrel said he could not participate on any of them.

"We had everyone lined up," Collier said. "Everyone agreed. Then I got an e-mail back from his (Sodrel's) office saying they declined. We had moved the date twice. ... we offered nine different options. They respectfully declined our offer, so then we decided to let it go."

Collier said the legislative affairs committee did not consider having a three-way debate with the other three candidates, Travis Hankins of Columbus, Rick Warren of Elizabethtown and Todd Young of Bloomington.

He said the committee does not have any plans for a debate among the four Democratic candidates for the 9th District.

The debate, which will be in the building at the Jennings County Fairgrounds in North Vernon, will be open to the public, but there will be an admission charge of $10 for adults and $2 for students with a student identification card. The event will begin with the public being able to talk informally with the candidates from 5 to 7 p.m., followed by the debate from 7 to 9 p.m.