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Two Democratic Primary Senate Debates Scheduled

Candidates for the Democratic nomination for the United States Senate from Massachusetts — Joseph P. Kennedy III, Shannon Liss-Riordan, and Edward J. Markey — have agreed to appear in two live debates sponsored by the veteran debate partnership that includes the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies at UMass Boston, WBUR radio, The Boston Globe, and WCVB Channel 5.

By agreement with the campaigns, this partnership will hold the last debate before the September 1 Democratic primary. Scheduled for August 18, it will be held either at the WCVB studios in Needham or on the UMass Boston Campus.

The partnership will also hold a televised debate in Springfield on March 18, 2020, at the Western Mass News studio. For this debate, other collaborators include Western Mass News (WGGB ABC and WSHM CBS), MassLive, The Republican newspaper, Univision stations - WUNI Boston and WHTX Springfield, New England Public Radio, and UMass Amherst School of Public Policy.

All debates will have Spanish-language translation via the Univision stations.

“At the John W. McCormack Graduate School,” said Dean David Cash, “we see one of our fundamental roles as convening public civic discussions that are at the very core of our democracy – elections. We hope these debates will help voters make the best possible choices.”

“WCVB Channel 5 is honored to be among this esteemed group of partners, and we look forward to broadcasting the highly-anticipated final debate among the Democratic candidates for United States Senate,” said Bill Fine, WCVB President and General Manager. “WCVB has a long history of airing live debates, providing exposure to the candidates in a spirited and revealing discussion about their policies and positions. We are proud to join forces to provide this far-reaching, comprehensive local coverage that will help viewers be well-informed before casting their votes.”

"The Boston Globe is thrilled to be joining with this high-octane group to host substantive, exciting conversations that illuminate where the Democratic candidates for United States Senate stand," said Boston Globe Political Editor Joshua Miller. "Public service drives our journalism, and we're pleased to offer Massachusetts residents opportunities to get to know the people asking for their votes."

“We are committed to offering our audience robust, complete, and contextual campaign coverage. Debates are a hugely important part of that coverage,” said Tom Melville, executive news director of 90.9 WBUR. “We are honored to be working with our debate partners to be providing this important resource to the voters of Massachusetts.”

For more information please contact Bob Turner, Research Fellow at the McCormack Graduate School (617 287-5579;; Maria Kucinski on behalf of WBUR (617-275-6533;; Jane Bowman, Vice President . Marketing and Strategic Partnerships at the Boston Globe (617-929-8434;; David Hurlburt, Executive Producer of Special Projects at WCVB (781-433-4537;; Ed Kubosiak Jr., Vice President of Content at MassLive (413-731-2478;; or Catherine Donovan, Debate Coordinator for Western Mass News (413-846-0158;

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