Centre officially enters race to host
2008 Presidential Election Debate
RELEASED: April 5, 2007
DANVILLE, KY—Centre College is among 19 candidates bidding to host a general election debate in 2008, according a list released Monday by the Commission on Presidential Debates.
Says Centre President John A. Roush, "If chosen, I am confident that Centre and its remarkable team of people can conduct a debate that will, as observed by others in 2000, set a new standard for excellence."
In 2000, Centre hosted the only Vice Presidential Debate, the execution of which members of the media and the Commission deemed the new standard for hosting.
A debate at Centre College would once again bring thousands of media personnel and support staff to campus, along with raising the national and international profile of Centre, Danville and the entire state of Kentucky. Roush is confident that the success of Centre's 2000 debate hosting will give Centre an edge over the competition.
"The energy, the engagement, and the sense of possibility—especially in our students and young people throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky—distinguished the event in 2000," he says.
Should Centre be chosen to host a debate in 2008, it has many advantages to offer. In addition to having the experience of successfully hosting a debate, the College has the Norton Center for the Arts—a facility that few, if any host sites, no matter their size, can match.
Just as important as the debate hall itself are the facilities for the thousands of journalists and media personnel who cover these events. While the College's Sutcliffe Hall (an athletic and recreation complex) provided an adequate media facility in 2000, the renovated and expanded Sutcliffe, which has been in service for just over a year, would provide an outstanding venue in 2008.
The Commission on Presidential Debates also places great value on having the debate hall and media center in close proximity. The fact that the Norton Center and Sutcliffe are a little more than a hundred yards apart is a decided advantage for the College. In fact, one Commission official has told Centre officials that the design of the renovated and expanded Sutcliffe is ideal for a debate.
In a typical presidential election year, three debates are scheduled for the presidential candidates, and the vice presidential candidates meet for one debate. Host applicants are considered for both presidential and vice presidential debates.
The Commission on Presidential Debates will evaluate the applications and make site visits before issuing its decisions in October 2007.
The other candidates are: Arizona State University (Tempe, Ariz.); Belmont University (Nashville, Tenn.); Economic Development Corporation of Wayne County, Indiana; Hofstra University (Hempstead, N.Y.); Indiana University and the City of Bloomington's Convention and Visitor's Bureau; MERC (Portland, Ore.); Ohio State University, National Public Radio, and Public Broadcasting Station (Columbus, Ohio); State of Illinois (Lakeside Center/McCormick Place, Chicago); University of Cincinnati and the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber; University of Central Arkansas (Conway, Ark.); University of Miami (Coral Gables, Fla.); University of Mississippi (Oxford, Miss.); VisitPittsburgh; Wake Forest University (Winston-Salem, N.C.); Washington State University (Spokane, Wash.); Washington University (St. Louis, Mo.); Wesleyan University (Middletown, Conn.); Women of the Storm (New Orleans, La.).
The Commission on Presidential Debates (debates.org) was established in 1987 to ensure that debates, as a permanent part of every general election, provide the best possible information to viewers and listeners. Its primary purpose is to sponsor and produce debates for the U.S. presidential and vice presidential candidates and to undertake research and educational activities relating to the debates. The organization, which is a nonprofit, nonpartisan corporation, has sponsored all the presidential debates in 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000 and 2004.
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Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Centre alumni, known for their nation-leading loyalty in annual financial support, include two U.S. vice presidents and two Supreme Court justices. For more, visit http://www.centre.edu/web/elevatorspeech/
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