MARQUETTE - Political debates and forums are the talk in every coffee shop across the nation as the Nov. 4 general election draws closer. Now, there'll be a local one for people to talk about and help them decide who to vote for.
The Upper Peninsula Children's Coalition will be hosting a candidate forum at 7 p.m. today at Peter White Public Library. Republican and Democrat candidates for offices representing the Upper Peninsula are expected to be in attendance.
"People can expect is to see these candidates answering questions related to children and family issues, specifically," said Paul Olson, chairman of the coalition. "The questions were pre-selected and randomly matched with the candidates and all of those questions are related to three priorities that the Children's Coalition identified."
Those priorities are health care, prevention services and self advocacy, he said. The questions were created by members of the coalition, youths from 8-18 Media and Northern MIchigan University students, as well as other groups.
Olson said each candidate will have two minutes to answer a question before the other candidate is allowed to answer the same question. The event is expected to last less that two hours.
In addition to being held live, Charter Communications will record the forum and rebroadcast it on Channel 8 at 7 p.m. Friday, 5 p.m. Monday, 7 p.m. October 31 and 6 p.m. Nov. 3.
Candidates scheduled to attend this evening's forum include Bart Stupak and Tom Casperson, who are running for the 1st District U.S. House seat and state House candidates Gary McDowell and Alex Strobehn, who are running for the 107th district; Judy Nerat and MIke Falcon, who are running for the 109th district; Steve Lindberg and Doreen Takalo, who are running for the 109th district; and Mike Lahti and John Larson, who are running for the 110th district.