BOZEMAN – MontanaPBS has canceled its plans to broadcast a debate in Montana’s U.S. House race because one of the candidates isn’t planning to attend.
Republican Ryan Zinke cited a scheduling conflict in pulling out of the Sept. 29 event in Billings. That left Democrat John Lewis as the only participant.
The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reports a debate invitation sent to the candidates by media organizations said the event will be held even if one of the candidates didn’t participate.
On Aug. 27, a Billings Gazette editorial said what should have been a debate would be an hour-long panel discussion with Lewis.
Aaron Pruitt with MontanaPBS says a debate with only one candidate isn’t a debate.
Gazette editor Darrell Ehrlich said PBS was concerned about Federal Communications Commission requirements that candidates receive equal air time.
Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup.
Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox.