It’s the Lt. Governor Candidates’ Turn to Talk

WA State Debate Coalition, Seattle CityClub and AARP again team up to encourage civic engagement


Seattle, Wash. (Oct. 19, 2020) – Hard on the heels of a successful and civil gubernatorial debate, the Washington State Debate Coalition (WSDC), led by Seattle CityClub and sponsored by AARP, today announced that the lieutenant governor debate, featuring Denny Heck and Marko Liias, will be held on October 22 at 8pm PDT. This virtual event, like the recent gubernatorial debate, will be moderated by reporters from across the state including Michelle Esteban (KOMO), Jessica Janner Castro (KING), Scott A. Leadingham (NWPB), and Mike McClanahan (TVW).

“Lt. governor is an important position in state government,” said Laura Lockard, chairperson of the WSDC and board member of Seattle CityClub. “Lt. governor is president of the state senate, serves as acting governor if the governor is unable, and oversees key issues including higher education and economic development. All residents are encouraged to submit questions so that their concerns and suggestions can be addressed by the candidates.”

Lieutenant governor is a singular position in Washington state government. As president of the state senate, the lt. governor sets the legislative agenda, deciding the priorities the senate will undertake in each session, including making the determination on which legislation advances to the senate floor. Also, the lt. governor serves as the acting governor whenever the governor is out of the state, which is a frequent occurrence in modern politics. Finally, if the governor is unable to serve his term, the lt. governor rises to the office. Finally, under state law, the lieutenant governor chairs the Legislative Committee on Economic Development and International Relations (LCEDIR), a key committee that directs the state’s economic priorities.

“We encourage the high interest of our members and older voters in local and national politics,” said Cathy MacCaul of the AARP. “Even more importantly we want them to share their knowledge and experience with their friends and family and use opportunities like the lieutenant governor’s debate to have a dialogue about the importance of voting.”

The lieutenant governor’s debate will be broadcast live on KCTS 9, KING 5, KOMO 4, NWBP, and TVW. The debate will also be live streamed on,,,,,, and

In eastern Washington, the debate will be broadcast live on KSPS and KREM 2. It will also be streamed live on,, and

Audience questions can be submitted at

The WSDC and its partners are committed to the safety and security of all candidates, staff and volunteers involved in the upcoming debates while our state continues fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, debates will be held at the broadcast facilities of TVW in Olympia, Wash., where all public health guidelines for social gatherings and face coverings will be followed.


About the WA State Debate Coalition

Founded by Seattle CityClub in 2016, the Washington State Debate Coalition has produced seven public debates, viewed more than 1.5 million total times, covering gubernatorial elections, U.S. Senate races, and more. The WSDC is supported every election cycle by media, education and civic partners, all committed to the belief that making public debates available to all is crucial to a functioning democracy. It is sponsored by AARP Washington and BNSF Railway. To see all WSDC 2020 partners, and to access free Educational Resources and a WSDC FAQ, visit


About the Premiere Media Partners

The following media outlets are the WSDC’s distinguished partners for the 2020 debate season (in alphabetical order): Cascade Public Media, KING 5, KIRO 7, KOMO 4, KUOW, Northwest Public Broadcasting, Q13 (KCPQ) and TVW.


About AARP

AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation’s largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.


About Seattle CityClub 

Seattle CityClub is a nonpartisan, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization improving the civic health of the Puget Sound region by providing programs that bridge politics, sectors and generations to inform and engage residents and community leaders. For more information, visit


Media contact

Alexander Wheeler

Program Manager, Seattle CityClub