• Tue. Sep 20th, 2022

Utah GOP and Debate Commission weigh in on debate concerns

ByChad J. Johnson

May 11, 2022

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Debate Commission and Utah GOP leaders are speaking out on Republican involvement in future primary election debates.

Chairman of the Utah Republican Party Carson Jorgenson released a statement late Tuesday evening. He encouraged Utah GOP candidates not to confirm their participation in the debates.

“Debates are essential to the democratic process,” Jorgenson said in the statement. “However, the only primary races for our congressional delegation and the US Senate race this year will be with Republicans. It’s important that Republicans — and only Republicans — decide how the debates will shape up. »

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“We want someone who believes in the Republican Party and someone who supports the Republican Party and actually loves Republicans to moderate a Republican Party debate,” Jorgenson told KSL NewsRadio’s Dave and Dujanovic.

The Utah Debate Commission responded with a statement saying that they are committed to offering non-partisan and independent debates.

Wayne Co-Chair Niederhauser told KSL NewsRadio that the commission is made up of civic leaders, media and academic partners.

“The goal was to create objective, professional, independent, fair and transparent debates as a public service, to inform the voting public,” Niederhauser said. “And they’ve been well received over the years.”

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Niederhauser said one only has to look at past debates to see that they have accomplished that.

“And it’s hard to argue that I think they weren’t fair, professional, transparent and independent,” Niederhauser said. “And that’s our goal, and that’s what we’re working towards.”

Niederhauser said he would be concerned for the public good if any Republicans chose not to participate. But the commission plans to move forward with debates as they have done in the past.

Here are the dates of the next debates:

  • June 1: GOP US House Districts 2, 3 and 4 in Salt Lake City
  • June 2: GOP US House District 1 and GOP US Senate in Salt Lake City

The 2022 general election debate schedule:

  • October 4: US Senate at Utah Valley University
  • October 6: United States House of Representatives District 3 at Brigham Young University
  • October 10: United States House of Representatives District 1 at Weber State University
  • October 12: District 4 of the United States House of Representatives at the University of Utah

· October 14: District 2 of the United States House of Representatives at Southern Utah University