The Next Big Event

Mark your calendars--unlike tomorrow night's scrum, WB-56's May 25 debate will be a strictly Democratic affair.

Here's the full press release. Got to love the concept, and the potshots at other media outlets add some welcome zest:

THURSDAY, MAY 25 AT 10:30 P.M.

No Wonky Policy Gibberish.  Real People - Real Questions.

BOSTON, Wed., May 17, 2006 - WLVI-TV (Boston's WB) will air a "People's
Debate" between the Democratic candidates for Governor of Massachusetts on
Thurs., May 25 at 10:30 p.m., with simulcast on 96.9 FM Talk radio.  The
one-hour debate will be taped in the Boston's WB studio on Wed., May 24 at 4

"The People's Debate: Democratic Debate for Governor" will be moderated by
Boston's WB Anchor Karen Marinella and will include the three candidates for
the Democratic nomination: Boston businessman Chris Gabrieli, lawyer Deval
Patrick and Attorney General Thomas Reilly. 

Instead of philosophical questions from journalists, Boston's WB reporters
will spend the next week soliciting debate questions directly from
Massachusetts voters who want to know how these candidates' views will
effect their everyday lives.  Boston's WB is sending camera crews across the
state, from gas stations to playgrounds, to gather input on what voters feel
are the important issues they'd like to see addressed. Questions for the
candidates may also be submitted on-line at 

96.9 FM Talk will have host Margery Eagan field questions for the debate
from listeners during "Eagan and Braude" on Tuesday, May 23 from 12 p.m. - 1
p.m.   Boston's WB will be inside the 96.9 FM Talk studio to videotape the
program for a segment which will appear in the debate.

"The style of this debate will be relaxed and informal, yet the content will
be important and interesting for people who want to hear the candidates talk
about topics that matter," says Pam Johnston, news director, Boston's WB. 

The debate will take place around a table, not at podiums.  Ample
opportunity will be afforded for rebuttal and direct debate among the
candidates in response to all questions.  Candidates will be able to ask one
question to an opponent, and each will provide closing (but no opening)
remarks.  The debate will air at 10:30 p.m., giving viewers a better chance
to fit watching it into their busy schedules.

"We're committed to local political coverage and chose to air our debate at
10:30 p.m. because many working families are not home or available to watch
debates that air in the morning or early evening," said Vinnie Manzi, vice
president / general manager, Boston's WB.

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