THE Conservative Party announced on Monday that it will host leadership debates on June 17 and 18 in Toronto. The French debate will be on June 17 and the English debate will be on June 18.
Both debates will be livestreamed at conservative.ca starting at 7 p.m. ET, and Canadians will have the opportunity to submit questions for the candidates in advance. The debates will be moderated by the Leadership Election Organizing Committee (LEOC) co-chairs Dan Nowlan and Lisa Raitt.
“Last leadership, tens of thousands of Canadians took in our debates, and gave our candidates an important platform to differentiate their visions for the party, and for the country,” said Nowlan. “The debates are designed to provide ample opportunity for our four candidates to present their ideas, and answer questions directly from members and Canadians.”
The debates will exclusively feature questions from the public, and Canadians are asked to submit their video recorded questions at the Conservative Leadership website www.cpc-leadership2020.ca by June 10. The debates will also feature a head-to-head portion where candidates will debate each other one-on-one.
“These debates will allow our candidates to have a robust exchange of ideas and policy, while giving members a chance to better inform their choice among the candidates,” said Raitt. “While traditionally we’d like to have these debates in different parts of the country, the ongoing uncertainty around COVID-19 makes this the most sensible way to hold these debates.”
Due to COVID-19 health guidelines and government orders, the debates will take place without an in-person audience. Additional measures will be taken to ensure social distancing is respected among candidates and technical personnel – this includes keeping candidates separate and limiting staff that are present.
The Conservative Party will announce a new party leader after August 21 as soon as ballots can be properly processed and examined by scrutineers while respecting any health guidelines in place at that time.