DANVILLE, KY—Centre College, which hosted the 2000 Vice Presidential Debate and was one of 16 finalists for a 2008 debate, was chosen as an alternate site today when the Commission on Presidential Debates announced its selections for the 2008 General Election.
"We stand prepared to once again serve the American people in this most important civic selection process," said Centre President John A. Roush. "Given that the commission concluded that all host sites for presidential debates were to be new in 2008, no sites that had hosted a General Election debate previously were ultimately in the running to be chosen for a presidential debate.
"We understand the need for opportunity and inclusion in this vital undertaking and, in fact, applaud it. This aspect of the process worked in our favor in 2000. We are honored that the commission, based on Centre's extraordinary performance in 2000 and strong application in 2008, turned to us as an insurance policy should any of the other sites, for one reason or another, be unable to host a debate," Roush said.
Said Richard Trollinger, vice president for college relations at Centre: "While we anticipated hosting a second General Election Debate with great excitement, we are honored that the commission has entrusted us to stand ready to host a debate should that be deemed necessary.
"There are many exciting things happening at Centre and in Kentucky, including the state's bicentennial celebration of Abraham Lincoln's birth in Hodgenville, Kentucky. Lincoln was the Commonwealth's greatest gift to the nation. And the Lincoln-Douglas debates established debate as a fixture in the way Americans choose their political leaders," Trollinger said.
Centre is particularly proud of its connection with Lincoln. John Todd Stuart, a Class of 1826 graduate, was Lincoln's political mentor and first law partner.
The sites chosen to host Presidential Debates in 2008 are: University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss.; Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn.; and Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. Washington University in St. Louis was selected to host the Vice Presidential Debate. In addition to Centre, Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., is the other alternate site.
Following are the dates and times of each debate:
First presidential debate: Friday, Sept. 26 at University of Mississippi
Vice presidential debate: Thursday, Oct. 2 at Washington University
Second presidential debate: Tuesday, Oct. 7 at Belmont University
Third presidential debate: Wednesday, Oct. 15 at Hofstra University
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Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Consumers Digest ranks Centre No. 1 in educational value among all U.S. 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/
For news archives go to http://www.centre.edu/web/news/newsarchive.html.
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