A Louisiana debate after all, Governor John Bel Edwards and Eddie Rispone to go at it

Debate set for October 30

Jim Hanzo
October 21, 2019 - 5:49 pm

There's a debate after all.  Governor John Bel Edwards and Eddie Rispone will face off in what is likely to be the only gubernatorial debate of the run-off October 30th on Louisiana Public Broadcasting.

LPB partnered with Council for a Better Louisiana to host the debate, and CABL President Barry Erwin says the discussion will be broken into seven sections over the course of the hour.

“We’re going to be talking about infrastructure, fiscal policy, the constitution, and also about how national issues do or do not play into races here in Louisiana,” says Erwin.

The program will begin at 7 p.m. 

The questions will be posed by a panel of journalists, but Erwin says they’ll give plenty of opportunities for the candidates to interrogate each other.

“It’s one thing I think for our panel to ask questions, but I think people do like to see a governor’s candidate ask a tough question to their opponent and then have a chance for a rebuttal,” says Erwin.

This follows a national trend in debate formats that set aside more time for candidate to candidate questions.

With less than a month until voters hit the polls there were growing concerns that a run-off debate would not happen.  Erwin says in this case they just had a lot of coordinating work to do.

“Campaigns always have questions," he said.  "What is the format going to be?  How is it going to be organized?  Just a lot of specific questions so it does take a bit of time to work through those sorts of things.” 

Erwin says they were in discussions about the format at least as of last week.

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