Both candidates running to represent Washington's 3rd Congressional District have agreed to participate in their first formal debate ahead of the 2020 general election.
Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Battle Ground, and Democratic challenger Carolyn Long of Vancouver will face off in a debate hosted by the League of Women Voters and broadcast on Clark/Vancouver Television at 2 p.m. Oct. 9.
"The participation of these candidates should offer voters an opportunity to see where they stand on a wide selection of important issues. This effort is all about our mission to empower voters through education," Clark County League Co-Presidents Nancy Halvorson and Jane Johnson said in a media release Monday.
The debate will be co-sponsored by The Columbian, The Longview Daily News, the Skamania County Pioneer and the Goldendale Sentinel. It's hosted by three regional branches of the League of Women Voters, from Clark, Cowlitz and Klickitat-Skamania counties.
"This is truly a cooperative effort between three Leagues and four newspapers and represents the kind of collaboration that can only benefit our communities," Halvorson and Johnson said in the media release.
The debate will be moderated by Steve Leader, a veteran journalist who spent more than 30 years at Portland's KXL-FM radio before retiring in April.
Though this is Long's second time challenging Herrera Beutler -- the Democrat lost her 2018 race by 5 points -- this is the first time the congresswoman has agreed to a formal debate. In October 2018, the League had to cancel a scheduled debate between Long and Herrera Beutler because Herrera Beutler never responded to their inquiries, instead declining the invitation through a statement to The Columbian.
The two candidates instead made their 2018 pitches to voters at packed candidate forums in Woodland and Goldendale. This year, they've appeared side-by-side in a remote conversation with The Columbian's Editorial Board.
Last month, Long challenged Herrera Beutler to a series of three virtual debates, claiming that voters "deserve to see both of us on the virtual debate stage before November." The Oct. 9 debate will fulfill a third of that challenge.
"Now, more than ever, the people in Washington's 3rd Congressional District need to hear how both candidates plan to address the public health and economic crises facing our communities," Long said.
The debate will be broadcast live on CVTV and available later for streaming at CVTV.org.
The League of Women voters is a nonpartisan organization that just turned 100 years old. The Clark County branch is hosting a series of other candidate forums for state and county offices leading up to the Nov. 3 general election.
The forums will be broadcast on CVTV.org.
The schedule includes the following:
Candidates running for state office in the 17th and 18th Legislative Districts at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 30:
Legislative District 17
State senator -- Daniel Smith (D) and Sen. Lynda Wilson (R).
State representative Position 1 -- Tanisha Harris (D) and Rep. Vicki Kraft (R).
Legislative District 18
State senator -- Sen. Ann Rivers (R) and Rick Bell (D).
State representative Position 1 -- Rep. Brandon Vick (R) and Kassandra Bessert (D).
State representative Position 2 -- Donna L. Sinclair (D) and Rep. Larry Hoff (R).
Candidates running for state and county offices in the 49th Legislative District on 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1:
Legislative District 49
State senator -- Sen. Annette Cleveland (D) and Rey Reynolds (R).
State Representative Position 1 -- Rep. Sharon Wylie (D) and Justin Forsman (R).
State Representative Position 2 -- Park Llafet (R) and Rep. Monica Stonier (D).
County Charter Review Commissioners, District 1
Position 1 -- Michele L. McDermid, Michael Martin, Hector Hinojosa, James Conright, Anthony M. Venditti.
Position 2 -- Kathy McDonald, Steve Perkel, Kim D. Harless.
Position 3 -- Eric LaBrant, Barbara Taft Chen, Chris Goodwin.
Candidates running for seats on the Clark County Charter Review Commission at 4 p.m., Saturday Oct. 3:
County Charter Review Commissioners, at-large
Position 1 -- Rainy Rau, Doug Lasher, Tom Meilke.
Position 2 -- M. Kirby Ware, Eric Holt.
Position 3 -- Mike Dalesandro, Stephen Sechrist, Justin M. Forsman.
County Charter Review Commissioners, District 2
Position 1 -- Sydney Johnson, Charles P. "Chuck" Green, Thomas R. Higdon, Trevor Best, Julia Laterza.
Position 2 -- Jackie Lane, Kelsey Potter.
Position 3 -- Dorothy Gasque, Peter Sillian, Bridget McLeman, David E. Poland.
Candidates running for seats on the Clark County Council and Clark County Review Commission at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14:
County Councilor, District 3 -- Jesse James and Karen Bowerman.
County Councilor, District 4 -- Gary Medvigy and Matt Little.
County Charter Review Commissioners District 3
Position 1 -- Adam Baldwin, Maureen Winningham, Ken Lounsbury.
Position 2 -- Parker Davidson, Nena Cavel, Terri Niles.
Position 3 -- Jeff Angelo, Jess Mahan.
County Charter Review Commissioners, District 4
Position 1 -- Thomas Hernandez, Dave Stiles, Deanna Rusch, Chuck Miller.
Position 2 -- John Latta, Brent D. Boger, Glenn Kincaid.
Position 3 -- Liz Pike, Greg K. Anderson.
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