The three Democratic contenders for governor have agreed on a plan to hold three broadcast debates — two televised and one on radio — before the June 24 primary, according to the campaign of Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown.
Brown campaign manager Justin Schall sent out an email late Tuesday night said the lieutenant governor, Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler and Del. Heather R. Mizeur of Montgomery County had reached agreement on the plan.
However, on Wednesday morning, the Gansler and Mizeur campaigns accused Brown's campaign of breaking an agreement to make a joint announcement and said they would put out a statement later in the day. They did not say whether the details of the Brown announcement were inaccurate. Schall said that when the two other two campaigns declined to make a joint announcement of the agreement, he went forward on his own.
Brown's email confirmed their previously announced plan to hold their first debate, to be hosted by Washington's Channel 4 and moderated by NBC's David Gregory, on May 7 at 7 p.m. According to Schall, the debate will be televised in the Washington and Hagerstown media markets. So far there are no announced plans for it to be shown in Baltimore.
Schall said another debate will be sponsored by Maryland Public Television on June 2 and will be televised statewide. There was no mention in his email of a role for WBAL, which had previously been reported to be a co-producer. MPT has said its Jeff Salkin would moderate.
Schall said a third debate would be hosted by WOLB AM radio in Baltimore and would be hosted by former state Sen. Larry Young. The time and date of that debate has not yet been determined, he said. The email did not say whether the debate would be carried on WOLB's sister AM station, WOL in Washington.
According to Schall, the three candidates for lieutenant governor will take part in a televised debate on News Channel 8, a regional cable channel that serves the Washington area. It was not immediately clear whether that debate will be seen by Baltimore viewers. No date has yet been set for that debate, which according to Schall will be hosted by Bruce DePuyt. The candidates are Brown's running mate, Howard County Executive Ken Ulman; Prince George's County Del. Jolene Ivey, running with Gansler, and the Rev. Delman Coates, Mizeur's choice for lieutenant governor.
Schall said the campaigns are continuing to work out final details.
MPT is also planning to host a debate for the four Republican candidate for governor on June 6 as a co-production with WBAL. Del. Ron George of Annapolis, former Ehrlich administration official Larry Hogan, Charles County business executive Charles Lollar and Harford County Executive David R. Craig are expected to participate. WBAL's Jason Newton is scheduled to moderate.