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2008 Debates Announced

Jan 12, 2007  •  Post A Comment

The old election campaign is over. The new election campaign begins again with what appears to be the first Presidential debates of the 2008 campaign.

CNN tonight said it will join with Manchester New Hampshire station WMUR-TV, an ABC affiliate, and the New Hampshire Union Leader to air two nights of “debates” scheduled for April 4 and 5, with the Republicans coming the first day and the Democrats the second.

The debate will be moderated by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and will include a panel led by Union Leader political columnist John DiStaso and WMUR political director Scott Spradling as well as questions from a live audience.

CNN said the exact time the programs will air will be determined later, but the debates will also air on CNN radio and on the web.

“We are thrilled to host the first debates of this landmark election,” said CNN/U.S. president Jon Klein. “With an open field in both the Republican and Democratic parties, it is going to be vital for viewers to learn as much as possible about these candidates early on – particularly in unscripted settings like debates.”

“We think it only makes sense that the state with the first-in-the-nation primary also has the first-in-the-nation Presidential debate,” said Jeff Bartlett, WMUR general manager. “Many candidates and potential candidates have already made numerous trips to New Hampshire, and we felt that April would be a good time for the voters here to get their first impression about how the candidates stack up against one another.”

Joseph W. McQuaid, president and publisher of the New Hampshire Union Leader, said “The issues facing the next administration are as crucial as they have ever been for this country. It is not too early for the first primary state to present a forum to explore the views and the competence of serious candidates.”