Brown presents Hogan a proposed debate plan in the Maryland governor’s race

Maryland Democratic gubernatorial nominee Anthony G. Brown on Thursday proposed a series of three debates with Larry Hogan, his Republican opponent, in advance of the November general election.

Brown, the state’s lieutenant governor, suggested that he and Hogan conduct two televised debates, with one hosted by Washington-area media outlets and the other by Baltimore outlets.

In addition, Brown and Hogan, an Anne Arundel County businessman, would participate in one radio debate co-hosted by a Baltimore station and a Washington station and carried statewide on National Public Radio affiliates.

Under Brown’s proposal, his running mate, Howard County Executive Ken Ulman (D), would also face off against Boyd Rutherford, Hogan’s choice of a lieutenant governor candidate, in a debate in Western Maryland.

Hogan spokesman Adam Dubitsky said late Thursday afternoon that his campaign was still studying the proposal but believes “there ought to be a lot of debates and forums.”

“If we get an invitation, we’ll accept it,” Dubitsky said, noting Hogan has already agreed to a forum to be hosted in September by the Maryland Municipal League.

Dubitsky said Hogan would like the gubernatorial debates not only to take place in the Washington and Baltimore regions but also in Western Maryland, Southern Maryland and the Eastern Shore.

While Hogan appreciates the idea of a lieutenant governor debate in Western Maryland, “we think that the people of Western Maryland deserve more than that,” Dubitsky said.

In a statement Thursday afternoon, Brown said: “Marylanders have a real choice in this election, and I look forward to debating my vision for a better Maryland with Larry Hogan.”

Brown’s proposal specifies which media outlets he would like to see host the debates.

In the Washington area, the debate would be hosted by The Washington Post and NBC4. In Baltimore, it would be the Baltimore Sun and WJZ-TV. The proposal also calls for Maryland Public Television to broadcast both debates statewide.

Brown’s proposed radio co-hosts are Lary Young of Baltimore’s WOLB-AM and Kojo Nnamdi of Washington’s WAMU-FM. Under the format envisioned by Brown, both would ask questions.

Young moderated a debate ahead of the Democratic primary this year and one in 2010 between Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R).

John Wagner has covered Maryland government and politics for The Post since 2004.
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