Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz challenged Attorney General Maura Healey on Thursday to commit to three live, televised debates before the Democratic Party convention in June as she looks to chip away at advantages, like name recognition, that have made Healey the front-runner for the party's nomination for governor.
"Democrats deserve to hear publicly from their candidates for governor on the important issues facing us," Chang-Díaz said in a letter sent to Healey. "This moment calls for leadership that is willing to answer the tough questions and provide fearless commitment to the residents we serve."
The Boston state senator said she'd like the debates to be moderated, live and in-person sponsored by media organizations throughout the state, and she's hoping they can take place before Democrats gather in Worcester on June 4 to vote on a party endorsement and ballot access for statewide candidates.
"Bay Staters continue to face unprecedented challenges – a global pandemic, a struggling economy, a racial reckoning that has been generations in the making, the consequences of climate change, and all while the cost of housing, health care and childcare continue to climb," Chang-Diaz said. "In the face of these challenges, we are not without hope. If we are able to come together with courage and urgency, we can create a Commonwealth that works for everyone, not just the wealthy and well-connected."
Healey's campaign could not immediately be reached for comment. Chang-Diaz's campaign did not say whether it had spoken with any potential hosts for the debates, or if it had any sponsors lined up.
Recent polling has shown Healey to be the early leader in the 2022 race to succeed Gov. Charlie Baker and she holds a commanding money advantage over her Democratic and Republican rivals for the office, but most voters remain undecided with less than six months until the Sept. 6 primaries