Gov. Ron DeSantis and Charlie Crist have settled on at least one debate after the Democratic challenger RSVP’d to three prospective debates.
Crist’s list includes the prominent “Before You Vote” Debate, as well as the WPEC CBS 12 West Palm Beach Debate and the Decision 2022 Debate. However, the “Before You Vote” Debate is a hollow pledge, as Gov. Ron DeSantis will not participate in that debate, the only event set to broadcast statewide.
But DeSantis has agreed to participate in at least one debate, the debate hosted by WPEC CBS 12, a TV station owned by the conservative Sinclair Broadcast Group. The debate will air Oct. 12.
“I look forward to debating Ron DeSantis and holding him accountable for his extremist, anti-choice, billionaire donor agenda,” Crist said in a statement first obtained by Florida Politics. “If Ron DeSantis wants to take away more of our freedoms and rights, the least he can do is show up and tell Florida voters and why.”
DeSantis participated in the “Before You Vote” Debate against former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum during the 2018 gubernatorial race. The debate is the longest-running, nonpartisan televised debate series in Florida’s modern history.
The Decision 2022 Debate is hosted by Spectrum News, Tampa Bay Times, Orlando Sentinel and South Florida Sun Sentinel.
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio has indicated his intention to debate Democratic U.S. Rep. Val Demings in the senatorial version of the “Before You Vote” Debate, scheduled for Oct. 18.
The General Election will take place Nov. 8.
Crist, a former Congressman and Governor, resigned from the U.S. House at the end of last month to focus on the gubernatorial campaign.
Crist was elected Governor in 2006 as a Republican. He also mounted an unsuccessful bid to retake the Governor’s Mansion from then-Gov. Rick Scott in his first campaign as a Democrat.