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Debate in governor’s race canceled

East Idaho Elects

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The Idaho Debates regrets to announce that our scheduled debate on May 3 in the GOP primary for governor has been canceled. On April 15, Gov. Brad Little announced that he would not participate. At that point, Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin had indicated that she wouldn’t participate if Little didn’t, but we asked her to reconsider, as we had two qualified candidates, McGeachin and Ed Humphreys, and still could have held the debate as scheduled. (Other candidates on the ballot either didn’t meet active-campaign criteria or declined to participate.)

We gave the McGeachin campaign until 5 p.m. today to respond, with the understanding that if they didn’t respond, the debate would be canceled. That time came and went with no response.

“Debates remain a valuable tool for informing voters,” said Melissa Davlin, host of “Idaho Reports” on Idaho Public Television and the scheduled moderator for the debate. “We know from past viewer comments that even in a closed GOP primary, many of Idaho’s 475,000 Republican-affiliated voters rely on information from debates as they’re filling out their ballots.”

Remaining Idaho Debates in this year’s primary election include the debate in the race for Idaho Attorney General, which airs live tonight at 8 p.m. and features incumbent Lawrence Wasden and challengers Raul Labrador and Art Macomber.

Also, next week, the GOP candidates for state superintendent of public instruction will debate on April 25; and those for Idaho secretary of state on April 26. All the debates will be available for streaming on demand after they air at, where you can also find more information.

The Idaho Debates are a three-decade-plus institution in Idaho. They are a collaboration between the Idaho Press Club, Idaho Public Television, the League of Women Voters of Idaho and Idaho’s public universities.