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Capps, Maldonado Ready for Noozhawk-KEYT Prime-Time Debate

Congressional candidates will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday for their only live, televised debate of the election

Final preparations are being made for Tuesday night’s live, televised debate between Rep. Lois Capps and challenger Abel Maldonado in their closely watched race for the 24th Congressional District seat.

The event, sponsored by Noozhawk and KEYT, will air on Channel 3 from 7 to 8 p.m., and be live streamed on Noozhawk will also be tweeting the debate on Twitter, using the #debate24 hashtag.

Journalists from the two organizations met Monday afternoon to winnow a list of questions — ranging from local and domestic issues to foreign affairs — that will be asked of the two candidates. Most of the questions were drawn from the scores that were submitted by readers and viewers of the two news organizations.

KEYT anchor Paula Lopez will moderate the debate.

Each candidate will make an opening statement, which will be followed by the selected questions. The candidates will have an opportunity to offer a short rebuttal for each question, and the debate will end with brief closing statements from the pair.

The two candidates have faced off several times during the campaign, and will meet again Oct. 9 at UCSB in a debate sponsored by the Santa Barbara Independent and the Carsey-Wolf Center at UCSB.

Capps, a Democrat, has represented the Central Coast in Congress for the past 14 years, in a district spanning the coastal area from Oxnard in Ventura County north to Monterey County.

After starting his political career in the city of Santa Maria, Maldonado, a Republican, has represented the Central Coast in the Assembly and state Senate, and was appointed lieutenant governor by then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. He lost a bid to retain that position in 2010.

The event will not include a live audience, but among those invited to KEYT’s studios in Santa Barbara for the debate are nearly a dozen local high school journalists.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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