Utah nearly was chosen as the host of one of the three presidential debates this year, and will likely host one of the crucial debates in the 2020 cycle.
Scott Howell, the co-chair of the Utah Debate Commission, was a guest on "I Have Questions with Bryan Schott," when he revealed Utah was asked by the Presidential Debate Commission to host the third presidential debate focusing on foreign policy.
"Wouldn't that have been great to have Donald and Hillary right here (in Utah)," said Howell. "We had an opportunity to do it this year, but there was some miscommunication with one of our universities, which pulled out in the end."
Howell says BYU was initially tapped to host the October debate, but logistical conflicts got in the way. The University of Utah was asked to host after BYU couldn't, but they couldn't hammer out conflicts in time. In the end, that debate went to the University of Nevada Las Vegas on October 19.
Howell says his group has been tapped by the Presidential Debate Commission to host one of the debates during the 2020 election cycle.
"2020 will be a big year, and this will give us the time to really ramp up for it," he said. "We have already started the fundraising operation for 2020. We're thrilled the debate commission reached out to ask us if we'd be interested."
The Utah Debate Commission plans to host seven debates around the state this year ahead of the November election. The schedule is as follows:
|September 21, 2016||Attorney General Debate||Dixie State University|
|September 26, 2016||Gubernatorial Debate||Utah State University|
|October 4, 2016||2nd Congressional District||University of Utah|
|October 10, 2016||4th Congressional District||Salt Lake Community College|
|October 12, 2016||U.S. Senate Debate||Brigham Young University|
|October 17, 2016||1st Congressional District||Weber State University|
|October 19, 2016||3rd Congressional District||Utah Valley University|