the dems are coming

Historic Houston university hosts third Democratic primary debate this fall

Historic Houston university hosts third Democratic debate this fall

Places-Unique-Texas Southern University-sign-1
Historic Texas Southern University will host the upcoming Democratic debates. Courtesy photo

The Democratic National Committee has chosen Texas Southern University as the host for the third Democratic presidential debate.

The candidates will meet on September 12 and 13 at the Health and Physical Education Center. ABC News will televise the debate.

"As the heart and soul of Houston, TSU is proud to serve as the venue for this upcoming debate," says Austin Lane, president of Texas Southern University. "Not only does this reflect positively on the diversity in the city of Houston, it will also provide many of our students with opportunities to work directly with ABC News."

It's an exciting day for TSU. Details on the format, moderators, and exact timing for the debates will be announced at a later date.

From the debate stage to the spin room, there is excitement that comes from Houston being the host city, bringing much more than politics to the community.

There's also an energy, a spotlight and an opportunity for a city to shine, as Miami found out last month during the first Democratic debate.

"You can't buy that publicity," says Alfred Sanchez, CEO of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.

Sanchez said debates may not bring throngs of visitors to a city and an injection of quick cash, but it brings a long lasting afterglow with the potential for sustained economic benefits.

"We used to be fun in the sun, and now we're a serious place to do business, and coverage like this really focuses the national and international attention on that fact," Sanchez says. "Of course, getting a ticket to the debate is a tall order. So a lot of people went to watch parties. There were more than a dozen of them, and one of them was within earshot of the theater."

"It's bringing in the local community," says Craig Tooker, with Miami's Gabriel Hotel.

The Gabriel Hotel and its Cultura restaurant used the opportunity to host parties both nights.

They advertised specials on drinks and high-end appetizers intended to draw a crowd who could enjoy a party-like atmosphere while watching the debate.

"They can come here, have a great time with like-minded people," Tooker says. "They can sit down and have great food, great drinks."

With the debate coming to Houston, expect watch parties too, along with truckloads of national and international media who will cover the candidates, as well as their host city.


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