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Wake Forest University to submit application to bring presidential debate to campus


March 26, 2007

Wake Forest University President Nathan O. Hatch announced in an e-mail to  faculty, staff and students March 26 that it is taking the first step toward attempting to host a third presidential debate.

The university will submit an application this week to the Commission on Presidential Debates to be considered as a host for a presidential debate in fall 2008.   The commission, created in 1987, is responsible for sponsoring and producing presidential debates.

Wake Forest previously hosted presidential debates in 2000 and 1988. 

"I am pleased to let you know that this week, we are submitting Wake Forest’s application to host a Presidential debate in the fall of 2008,” Hatch wrote in his e-mail.  “We are taking this step because hosting a debate brings to our campus a singular learning opportunity, as we learned in 1988 and 2000.  Not only do many students get the opportunity to work with various aspects of the debate, but it also gives the faculty more opportunities to link their own disciplines to key issues being addressed by Presidential candidates.”

Wake Forest proposes that a debate be held in 2008 in the university’s Wait Chapel, where debates were held in 2000 between George W. Bush and Al Gore and in 1988 between George Bush and Michael Dukakis.

The university expects to learn by October 2007 if the Commission on Presidential Debates has chosen it to be one of the hosts for a debate.

Press Contacts:

Kevin Cox
(336) 758-5237


Cheryl Walker
(336) 758-5237


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