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Going to the Candidates' Debate

TV, radio and print reporters, including Newscenter 5's Natalie Jacobsen, turned out in droves to cover the debate at WPI between gubernatorial candidates Shannon O'Brien and Mitt Romney.

On Oct. 1, WPI became the center of the Massachusetts political universe when it hosted a gubernatorial debate. The event drew not only the candidates, but thousands of their supporters, hundreds of guests, and a strong contingent of state, regional and national media.

The debate was broadcast live on every Boston network affiliate, on New England Cable News and on many state radio stations. C-SPAN broadcast the debate later that evening, and WPI webcast the event. The debate was moderated by Judy Woodruff, prime anchor and senior correspondent at CNN, who also broadcast that day's edition of CNN's popular political forum, Inside Politics With Judy Woodruff, from the WPI campus. A 30-year veteran of broadcast journalism, Woodruff moderated several debates during the 2000 presidential election.

While Democratic candidate Shannon O'Brien and Republican candidate Mitt Romney fielded questions inside the Campus Center Odeum, their supporters and those of three other candidates (who were not invited by the debate's media sponsors to take part), demonstrated outside.

"With education such a vital issue to the future of the Commonwealth, it was appropriate that this debate be held at an academic institution dedicated to preparing the next generation of engineers, scientists and technologists for leadership roles in the new economy," noted WPI President Edward Alton Parrish.

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Last modified: Sep 02, 2004, 11:12 EDT
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