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Second U.S. Senate Debate, Sponsored By KERA, Set For Oct. 19

Final details have been locked down for KERA’s Oct. 19 debate between Republican Ted Cruz and Democrat Paul Sadler, who are running to represent Texas in the U.S. Senate.

Part of KERA’s long-running Texas Debates project, the hourlong event starts at 7 p.m. in the station’s Dallas studio. It will air live in Dallas on Channel 13 and 90.1 FM, and it’s being offered free of charge to TV and radio stations around the state.

Shelley Kofler, the managing editor of KERA News, will moderate, with a panel of journalists including Peggy Fikac, Austin bureau chief for the San Antonio Express-News/Houston Chronicle; Ross Ramsey, executive editor of The Texas Tribune; and Pedro Rojas, reporter/news anchor for Houston’s Univision station, KXLN-Channel 45.

KERA considered every candidate on the ballot, based on its longstanding viewpoint-neutral Texas Debate Guidelines. Cruz and Sadler were the only candidates who met all those criteria.

The debate comes a little more than two weeks after the first Texas senatorial debate. It will be produced by KERA in partnership with Univision Texas, The Texas Tribune, the Houston Chronicle, the San Antonio Express-News, Texas Association of Broadcasters, Texas State Networks and the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas. Univision will provide Spanish-language translation.

The winner in the Nov. 6 general election will take the seat of Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison, who is retiring from Congress.

Rick Holter was KERA's vice president of news. He oversaw news coverage on all of KERA's platforms – radio, digital and television. Under his leadership, KERA News earned more than 200 local, regional and national awards, including the station's first two national Edward R. Murrow Awards. He and the KERA News staff were also part of NPR's Ebola-coverage team that won a George Foster Peabody Award, broadcasting's highest honor.