D-3 challenger responds to column
       I appreciate your interest in and coverage of the City Council election and particularly the race in District 3, which covers much of the Westside. I'd like to respond to your Editor's Desk column (“Duck, it's election season”) in the Feb. 26 edition of the Westside Pioneer.
       First, I'm glad to see you suggested a debate between the two candidates in the District 3 race. I welcome such a debate. I share your view this would be the most constructive way to have an informed and meaningful election. I will participate in such a debate. I would even set it up, if it weren't for the fact that it should, in all fairness, be organized and run by an impartial party.
       I have not stepped into the fracas my opponent, [incumbent Jerry] Heimlicher, is attempting to stir up over an e-mail by an individual who supports my candidacy. This is because I don't feel it's my place to police the views of individual citizens and how they express them. I certainly will take responsibility for my own statements and any official communication from my campaign.
       I believe it is that citizen's right to form an opinion of Mr. Heimlicher's relative strength of support or non-support of any issue, based on his voting records, his other actions, and statements he makes.

Dave Gardner
Colorado Springs City
Council Candidate (D3)