U-M exploring possibility of hosting a 2020 presidential debate

April 11, 2019

The University of Michigan is exploring the possibility of hosting a presidential debate during the 2020 campaign.

In an April 1 letter to the Commission on Presidential Debates, President Mark Schlissel said, “It is with great honor that the University of Michigan, in close collaboration with our Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy and other units on our campus, submits an application to the Commission on Presidential Debates to host a debate during the 2020 election season.”

The commission released the names of the six institutions or communities that submitted letters of interest on Wednesday, April 3. The next step will be the submission, later this month, of a more detailed plan for hosting a debate.

The commission is expected to make final decisions on debate hosts in late summer.

The announcement of U-M’s bid as a host institution quickly received media attention within a state that will likely be key to securing the White House for both parties in 2020. Stories covering the potential bid ran on Politico, MLive, All About Ann Arbor, and The Detroit News. 

Among the other potential hosts for a presidential debate are Belmont University in Tennessee, Creighton University in Nebraska, the University of Utah, the University of Notre Dame, and the City of Hartford, Connecticut. 

Read President Schlissel’s letter to the Commission on Presidential Debates and U-M’s announcement

Click here to read about the Commission on Presidential Debates.