HARRISBURG, PA — Spotlight PA (spotlightpa.org) — with an unprecedented coalition of
major media companies and leading colleges in Pennsylvania — today announced dates for two
“Pennsylvania in the Spotlight” U.S. Senate debates leading up to the spring primary.
A Democratic U.S. Senate debate will be held at 7 p.m. April 25 at Dickinson College in Carlisle,
PA, and will feature candidates Kevin Baumlin, John Fetterman, Malcolm Kenyatta, Alexandria
Khalil and Conor Lamb.
A Republican U.S. Senate debate will be held the following night, April 26, at the same time and
location and will feature Kathy Barnette, Jeff Bartos, George Bochetto, Sean Gale and Carla
Sands, and other candidates may be added.
The debates are hosted by Spotlight PA and its founding members — The Philadelphia Inquirer,
Trib Total Media, PennLive/The Patriot-News, and WITF — in conjunction with Dickinson
College, the Eisenhower Institute at Gettysburg College and PCN.
The events will be broadcast statewide by PCN and live-streamed online by the participating
media companies. They will be held before a live audience, but due to COVID-19 precautions
and security protocols, they will not be open to the general public.
“Central to Spotlight PA’s mission is informing, equipping, and empowering voters in
Pennsylvania to make educated decisions at the polls,” said Spotlight PA Executive Director
Christopher Baxter. “That includes subjecting any candidate for higher office to tough,
nonpartisan questioning about their record and their vision for our state, and giving voters —
regardless of political affiliation — the chance to hear from them directly.”
The 90-minute format will feature a moderator and veteran journalists from the host news
organizations, and the discussions will focus on the most pressing matters facing
Pennsylvanians. The campaigns had no role in determining the panelists or the topics.
“Debates are an important forum to put candidates on the public record,” said Trib Total Media
President and CEO Jennifer Bertetto. “If they win the election, journalists can hold them
accountable to their comments and campaign promises.”
The Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association and Pennsylvania Women’s Forum are supporting
partners for the debates.
FOR THE MEDIA: Members of the media must pre-register to attend and cover the debates.
Please RSVP to Craig Layne at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ABOUT SPOTLIGHT PA:
Recognized as one of the most promising new journalism endeavors in the United States,
Spotlight PA (www.spotlightpa.org) is dedicated to providing unique, in-depth investigative and
public-service journalism about the Pennsylvania state government, urgent statewide issues
and the most pressing matters facing our local communities. Our member-supported newsroom
distributes its reporting at no cost via spotlightpa.org and to more than 80 partner newsrooms
from State College to Erie, Philadelphia to Pittsburgh. Over the last two years, Spotlight PA’s
reporting has garnered numerous state and national awards and driven meaningful change and
important policy reforms in Harrisburg, strengthening democracy in our state.