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Political Science Department to Host Debate Between First Congressional District Candidates Oct. 25


JONESBORO, AR – Arkansas State’s Department of Political Science is joining with the ASU Radio-Television Department, The Herald and the Jonesboro Sun to host a debate between the candidates vying for office in the Arkansas First Congressional District, Thursday, Oct. 25, from 6:30-8 p.m.

Dr. Richard Wang, associate professor of Political Science, said all four candidates have accepted invitations to participate.

Incumbent Congressman Rick Crawford (Republican) and challengers Scott Ellington (Democrat), Jacob Holloway (Green Party) and Jessica Paxton (Libertarian Party) will convene in the ASU-TV Studio in the College of Communications Building on the ASU campus to participate in the debate. The program will run for 90 minutes and broadcast live on both ASU-TV (cable channel 18) and KASU Radio (91.9 FM) and will also be streamed live on KASU.org. It will also be replayed several times on Channel 18 prior to the election and made available to other area cable networks.

Towns and cable stations that will carry a live feed from KAIT-TV’s 8.2 include: Jonesboro - Suddenlink – 247 McDougal — Suddenlink – 247; Pocahontas —  Suddenlink – 247; Hoxie/Walnut Ridge — Suddenlink – 247; Paragould — City Cable – 247; Bono -—Ritter – 8; Lynn — Ritter – 8; Marked Tree — Ritter – 8; Crawsfordville — Ritter – 8; Poplar Bluff — City Cable – 247; Kennett, MO — Windjammer Communications – 310; Gosnell — Newwave – 200; Rector -- Newwave – 200; and Dexter, MO -- Newwave – 200.

The program is open to the public and to the media; however, seating is limited.

Dr. Will McLean, chair of the Department of Political Science, will serve as moderator and will open the program by introducing the candidates and the four journalists who will be asking the debate questions. The panel includes Jonesboro Sun editor Chris Wessel; producer, writer and editor for KASU Mark Smith; ASU Radio-TV and broadcast journalism major Kalup Phillips; and Herald editor (ASU's school newspaper) and journalism and pre-law major Lindsey Blakely.

“Prior to the beginning of the program, we will ask each candidate to draw for a program order,” explained Dr. Wang. “That will determine the seating on the set and which candidate will be first to give an opening statement. We will then rotate with questions and the closing arguments.”

Dr. Wang went on to say that each candidate will be allowed a two-minute opening statement as determined by the drawing.  Candidates will have two minutes to answer each question, and then the first candidate to field the question will be allowed a one-minute rebuttal. Any further rebuttals will have to be made on the next question or in the candidates’ closing remark.

“Each journalist will be allowed to ask a follow-up question to allow the panel to address a particular subject in greater depth,” continued Dr. Wang. “When that happens, the next candidate in order will be the first to field the follow-up.”

At the end of the program, each candidate will be allowed two minutes for a closing statement.

For additional information, contact Dr. Wang at (870) 972-3048 or rwang@astate.edu.