Next Thursday the race for the governor returns to Knoxville, with our own Mayor Bill Haslam squaring off against Jackson beer king Mike McWherter for a debate at the University of Tennessee. The last debate, held in mid-September at Tennessee Tech, in Cookeville, got fairly testy at times, with each man suggesting that his dad could beat up the other’s dad. But Haslam seemed to keep his cool better than the son of former Gov. Ned McWherter, and he’ll no doubt enjoy his home court advantage at the university his papaw helped build.
Regarding the format, the candidates will face questions from Hallerin Hill of News/Talk 98.7, Tom Humphrey of the News Sentinel, and one very nervous UT student. WBIR anchors John Becker and Robin Wilhoit will host and provide questions from viewers. Unfortunately for us (and for the state of Tennessee, the nation, and the world, really), none of the fine journalists at Metro Pulse was asked to participate—probably because we printed the word “heck” on the cover of this week’s issue.
The debate begins at 8 p.m. in the Cox Auditorium of the Howard Baker Center for Public Policy on the UT campus. It’s free and open to the public.