Written by Dominic Dezzutti

One of the big debates that the Colorado Decides series is featuring this fall features Congressman Mike Coffman and State Representative Joe Miklosi. The debate will run on both CBS 4 and on Colorado Public Television next week. Tune in on Thursday, Oct. 18 at 6:30 p.m. on CBS4 and Friday, October 19th at 9:00pm on CPT-12.

We taped the debate Tuesday night and from the very first segment, it was clear that this debate was going to be high energy and contentious, just the way we debate producers like it.

Shaun Boyd and Eric Sondermann co-hosted the debate. One of their first comments afterwards were that they could have thrown out the questions and simply let the candidates talk to each other about the negative ads each other are running against each other.

Indeed, talking about ads from the campaign, especially since they were put to a Reality Check by Shaun, got the debate off to a rousing start. Both Eric and Shaun had to work to get the candidates back on track.

The debate also showed that both candidates are ready for a fight.

Rep. Coffman is not only a military veteran, but also a political veteran of several campaigns. Seeing him in past debates, I knew he was going to come prepared.

But Rep. Joe Miklosi, having only run for the State House, was an unknown for me when it came to debates. But from the opening bell, he certainly displayed his desire and ability to keep up with and challenge Coffman.

I’ll let the voters decide who actually won the debate, but without spoiling the end for all of you, I can promise that the debate definitely exceeded expectations and brought out the best in both candidates.

I was particularly impressed with both candidates’ passion on various issues. Sometimes in debates, it’s hard to decide to change topics if one is already inspiring vigorous conversation. You don’t want to stop the momentum.

But every time Shaun and Eric changed topics, both candidates picked up the energy where they left off on the previous point.

I wasn’t always sure if the race in the 6th CD was going to live up to the hype. However, between the high frequency of aggressive ads and seeing this vigorous debate, I am confident that the race will indeed live up to the hype.

However, my judgment is worth very little. I am not a voter in the 6th CD.

The opinions that matter belong to those 6th CD voters. If any of them have yet to decide who to deserves their vote for Congress, I highly recommend they tune in and check out our debate, featuring both candidates speaking their minds, directly to the voters. But I also recommend that anyone else who enjoys a good debate, and wants to check out two candidates directly speaking to the issues to also tune in.

Trust me, it beats checking out thirty second ads every time.

About The Blogger

– Dominic Dezzutti, producer of the Colorado Decides debate series, a co-production of CBS4 and Colorado Public Television, looks at the local and national political scene in his CBSDenver.com blog. Read new entries here every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Dezzutti writes about federal, state and local matters and how our elected leaders are handling the issues important to Colorado. Dezzutti also produces the Emmy winning Colorado Inside Out, hosted by Raj Chohan, on Colorado Public Television.


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