Hoosiers have the opportunity to hear from the three candidates running for Governor of Indiana – Democrat John Gregg, Republican Eric Holcomb and Libertarian Rex Bell – during a debates leading up to the election and IBA member stations across the state are able to broadcast them.
As broadcasters, informing the public is our core mission and that responsibility is heightened especially during the election season. We want to give Hoosiers access to those running for public office that will help them cast inform votes when they go to the polls in November.
So, we encourage all of our members to carry the broadcast of Monday’s debate, as well as the remaining ones, as a service to listeners and viewers.
The first debate, previously tentatively scheduled, will be Sept. 27 at Lawrence North High School in Indianapolis. The second will be Oct. 3 in Ransburg Auditorium at the University of Indianapolis and the third Oct. 25 at the University of Southern Indiana in Evansville.
The Sept. 27 debate, in the style of a town hall meeting, will be 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. EDT. It is being held in the morning because it is designed partly as an educational lesson for students throughout Indiana in partnership with Indiana Kids’ Election, a program sponsored by the Indiana secretary of state, Indiana Department of Education and Indiana State Bar Association. It will be webcast live by public television station WFYI to schools, and the webcast also will be made available to television stations and news organizations for viewing by the public live. In addition, it will be offered to television stations for broadcast later.
The second and third debates will be made available to television stations for broadcasting live 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time. The IDC’s broadcast partner for the Oct. 3 debate is WIPB, the public television station at Ball State University in Muncie. The broadcast partner for the Oct. 25 debate is WFIE, the NBC affiliate in Evansville.
“We are thrilled to be able to make the candidates available to the public so that voters can learn the candidates’ vision for Indiana firsthand,” said Dan Byron, president of the debate commission. “Our motto since our organization’s founding has been ‘Putting Voters First,’ and that is what we are doing with these debates.”
Members of the public can submit questions they would put to the candidates. Questions can be submitted to the IDC through its website at http://indianadebatecommission.com. From the submitted questions, the debate commission will select questions on a variety of topics for use in the debates.
The audience at the Sept. 27 debate will be composed entirely of high school students, teachers and school administrators who will hear the candidates’ positions primarily on educational issues, with some questions posed by students. There are no tickets for the general public .University of Indianapolis assistant professor of political science Laura Merrifield Albright will moderate.
The Oct. 3 debate will focus on the topics of jobs and the economy, with John Ketzenberger, president of the Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute, moderating. Tickets, which are free, are available at the University of Indianapolis at http://uindy.edu/debate2016. Those wanting to obtain tickets will need to establish an online account at the website. Tickets are limited to four per person.
Topics of the Oct. 25 debate will focus on health and social issues, with Mizell Stewart III, vice president of news operations for Gannett and USA Today Network, president of the American Society of News Editors and former editor of the Evansville Courier & Press. Ticketing information for that debate will be announced soon.
The debate commission also will host a debate among U.S. Senate candidates Democrat Evan Bayh, Republican Todd Young and Libertarian Lucy Brenton on Monday, October 18 at 7 p.m. EDT in Indianapolis at WFYI-TV.
About the Indiana Debate Commission:
The Indiana Debate Commission is a nonpartisan, statewide group of citizen and media affiliates dedicated to promoting debates at the state level. The volunteer commission, incorporated in 2007 and organized as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, works with candidates, sponsors, venues and citizen groups to promote open and unbiased debates for Hoosier voters. For more information, visit www.indianadebatecommission.com or join the commission on Facebook.
Twitter – @INDebateComm