VPR And Vermont PBS Partner On 2020 Gubernatorial Debates

Jul 9, 2020

Vermont Public Radio and Vermont PBS today announced the 2020 VPR–Vermont PBS Debates, a series of pre-recorded primary candidate debates for Governor and Lieutenant Governor leading up to Vermont’s primary election on August 11.

The first debate is scheduled for Tuesday, July 14 during Vermont Edition and at 8 p.m. on Vermont PBS. Moderated by Vermont Edition Host Bob Kinzel, the debate will feature Republican lieutenant governor candidates Dana Colson, Meg Hansen, Jim Hogue and Scott Milne.

Vermonters are also encouraged to participate by sending questions for the candidates in advance or by calling 802-552-3425 and leaving a message. These questions may be used in the debates.

"At this time, voters have fewer opportunities to see candidates in person, and these debates serve a crucial role in helping voters decide," said VPR President and CEO Scott Finn. "The combined strength of VPR and Vermont PBS ensures a large audience will see and hear these debates."

The production of joint debates marks a public media partnership that began during the 2018 election cycle and continued with last year’s This Land project. Earlier this year, VPR and Vermont PBS released a wide-ranging public opinion poll in advance of Vermont’s presidential primary. Upcoming projects include two more polls and four general election debates in the fall.

“We’re excited to team up again with VPR,” says Steve Ferreira, CEO of Vermont PBS. “Vermont’s public media has a vital role to play this election season as a trusted source of information about the candidates and issues.”

All candidates have been invited to participate, and the final debate rosters are subject to change. The debate schedule is as follows:

Lieutenant Governor (Republican): Tuesday, July 14
Hosted by Bob Kinzel

  • Dana Colson
  • Meg Hansen
  • Jim Hogue
  • Scott Milne
  • Dwayne Tucker

Lieutenant Governor (Democrat): Thursday, July 16
Hosted by Jane Lindholm

  • Tim Ashe
  • Molly Gray
  • Debbie Ingram
  • Brenda Siegel

Governor (Democrat): Tuesday, July 21
Hosted by Jane Lindholm

  • Rebecca Holcombe
  • Patrick Winburn
  • David Zuckerman

Governor (Republican): Wednesday, July 22
Hosted by Bob Kinzel

  • John Klar
  • Emily Peyton
  • Douglas Cavett 

VPR will air the Tuesday debates immediately following Gov. Phil Scott’s press briefing, around 1 p.m., with a rebroadcast at 7 p.m. The Wednesday debates will air at noon and 7 p.m. After broadcast, audio recordings of the debates will be available at VPR.org, and video will be available at vermontpbs.org/vermontvotes.