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Election debates to begin this week

Profile image for By Megan Gray and Bj Lewis / Staff writers
By Megan Gray and Bj Lewis / Staff writers

First debate to feature candidates running for district attorney

The Denton Republican Women’s Club is conducting its first debate of the election season Wednesday, featuring the three candidates running for district attorney.

Incumbent District Attorney Paul Johnson will face off against his two GOP primary election challengers, Lantana attorney Karen Alexander and Denton attorney Hank Paine.

It is the first in a series of debates planned by the club, said Michelle French, program chair for the group. The primary election is March 4 and the general election is Nov. 4.

And in another election forum, the Denton County Republican Party will hear from the two candidates for the local county chairman’s position at the party’s monthly meeting Thursday starting at 7 p.m. at the Denton County Elections Administration office, 701 Kimberly Drive, Suite A101.

Incumbent Dianne Edmondson is being challenged by Labib Basta. A social hour will start the event at 6 p.m., with district attorney candidate Paine expected to attend.

French said the Republican Women’s Club debates will take place during the club’s monthly meetings, which start at 11:30 a.m. at El Guapo Restaurant, 419 S. Elm in Denton.

Each candidate will have two minutes for opening and closing remarks and questions will be taken from the audience.

The meetings start with a buffet fajita lunch at 11:30 a.m., and the debates will begin at noon. The buffet is $12.50 per person.

Both men and women are welcome to attend the debates, and do not need to purchase a meal, French said.

The club is also working to conduct a debate with the candidates running for county judge. Incumbent County Judge Mary Horn is facing GOP primary challenges from Corinth Mayor Paul Ruggiere and Highland Village attorney Sherman Swartz.