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franklin county times

Political forum airs live Monday

By By Ben Alexander/The Meridian Star
May 21, 2001
The Human Relations Commission's political forum will be aired live on Comcast Cable Monday night, according to commission member Dr. Kathy Baxter.
The forum is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in the Emma McCain Theater at Meridian Community College. The television coverage will be on cable channel 12.
The forum will feature mayoral candidates Republican incumbent Mayor John Robert Smith, Democratic challenger William Hugh Johnson, and Independents Bill McBride and Charlie Haynes.
Candidates in contested city council races have also been invited to participate. The contested council races include Ward 3, where incumbent Barbara Henson, a Republican, faces independent Lee Fryery, Ward 4, where Councilman Jesse E. Palmer Sr., a Democrat, faces independent John Nelson Jr., and Ward 5, where incumbent Bobby Smith, a Republican, faces a challenge from independent Todd Vallot.
The commission, a part of the Lauderdale County Council of Governments, will allow each candidate two minutes for opening remarks. They will be questioned by a panel of media representatives, before the forum concludes with written questions from the audience.
Baxter reiterated the event is not a debate and candidates will not be addressing each other, only answering questions from other individuals.
Although the debate is being held on Memorial Day Baxter said the commission is hoping for a good turnout, which could be indicative of what voter turnout could be on election day.
The general election is June 5.
Ben Alexander is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3226, or e-mail him at balexander@themeridianstar.com.