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KATC, WBRZ, PAR and others team up for Gubernatorial debate in September

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Posted at 2:32 PM, Feb 16, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-16 15:32:08-05

The Urban League of Louisiana and WWL-TV (New Orleans Metro) in partnership with the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana (PAR), WBRZ-TV (Baton Rouge), KATC (Lafayette), and KTBS (Shreveport) announce they will co-host a televised debate for the 2023 Louisiana Gubernatorial Election on Thursday, September 7, 2023.

Each partnering organization has a track record of engaging political candidates to help provide non-partisan voter education and outreach throughout the state. This partnership ensures that this pivotal election decision is covered in every corner of Louisiana, a PAR release states.

“We all take our responsibility to inform the people of our areas very seriously,” said KATC VP/General Manager Sean Trcalek. “So, we’re thrilled and honored to partner with our friends and fellow broadcasters in New Orleans, Shreveport and Baton Rouge to provide this broadcast so that the people of our great state can make an informed decision this fall.”

“We’re excited to collaborate on this debate for such an important Louisiana election,” said PAR President Steven Procopio. “Democracy thrives when citizens are engaged and informed. We hope this event will give citizens the knowledge they need to review the candidates’ positions on policies critical to the state’s future and help them make their decisions in the voting booth.”

“The Urban League of Louisiana is proud to continue our history of non-partisan voter education and mobilization,” said Judy Reese Morse, President & CEO, Urban League of Louisiana. “This unique partnership positions our organization to help elevate issues important to the communities we serve as well as help to highlight the future Louisianians of all communities share.”

“This election is crucial to our state’s future and its importance cannot be overstated,” said Tod Smith, President and General Manager, WWL-TV. “With our partners, we are dedicated to helping our citizens throughout the state make an informed decision at the polls.”

While Labor Day is the unofficial start of the campaign season, many candidates are beginning to announce their intentions and setting critical milestones on their calendars. Today’s announcement provides an opportunity for all candidates and potential candidates to be aware of this opportunity that will afford them the chance to speak directly to voters in every section of our great state.

"We are excited to join our colleagues in sharing candidates' plans for moving Louisiana forward this fall. We welcome, and look forward to, the discussion among the candidates addressing the growing concerns of proud Louisianans who long for a state we can be proud to call home and where our families thrive," said Trey Schmaltz, General Manager of WBRZ, a family-owned TV station serving Baton Rouge and its surrounding Capital Area communities.

“Knowledge and information sharing are key components in any successful election,” said KTBS/KPXJ Station Manager George Sirven. “KTBS and KPXJ are excited to collaborate with our Louisiana broadcast colleagues and organizations by participating and airing this informative program to our north Louisiana audience.”

Details related to the candidate selection criteria, debate format, and more will be announced at a later date.