TUCSON – Cox Communications, Arizona Public Media, the League of Women Voters and the Associated Students of the University of Arizona (ASUA) will host a debate between U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and State Sen. Tim Bee, at the University of Arizona Student Union Memorial Ballroom, 1303 E. University Blvd. The debate is free and open to the public.

Moderating the debate will be KUAT Channel 6 Arizona Illustrated Political Correspondent Christopher Conover. Joining him in a media panel to lead the questions will be Ann Brown, Editorial Editor for the Arizona Daily Star; and Blake Morelock, Political Correspondent for the Tucson Citizen. A University of Arizona School of Journalism student also will be selected to participate in the panel.

“This is an important race for Southern Arizona and it’s vital to have these types of live debates, raising the issues and sharing information with the public,” said Lisa Lovallo, System Manager and Vice President for Cox Communications Southern Arizona.

The debate will be broadcast live on the UA Channel and KUAZ 89.1 FM-1550 AM Radio. Cox 7 and KUAT Channel 6 will rebroadcast the debate September 13th at 8:00 p.m.

The Candidates:

Gabrielle Giffords, Democrat, is a third generation Arizonan and the youngest woman ever elected to the Arizona State Senate. As the current Congresswoman to Congressional District 8, Giffords is a member of the House Committee on Armed Services, including the Subcommittee on Air and Land Forces and the Subcommittee on Readiness; the House Committee on Foreign Affairs including the Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere; and the House Committee on Science and Technology, including the Subcommittee on Energy and Environment.

Before her election to Congress, Giffords represented Tucson in the Arizona Legislature from 2000-2005. She served on the Appropriations, Commerce and Economic Development and Finance Committees. Giffords serves as President of the Atlantic Association of Young Political Leaders, represents the National Committee on China-US Relations as a Young Leader’s Forum Fellow and is a German Marshall Fund Manfred-Worner Fellow. In 2005 Gabrielle was selected for the inaugural two-year class of the Aspen-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership. She was also recently named one of America’s Eight Young Leaders Worth Watching by Gannett News Service.

Tim Bee, Republican candidate, is a third-generation native Tucsonan. He was elected to the Arizona State Senate in 2001, serving as the Senate Majority Leader from 2003 to 2006 and currently serves as the Senate President – the first from southern Arizona since 1974. He represents both rural and urban areas of southern Arizona. Bee has served as Vice-Chairman of the Rules, Appropriations, and Judiciary committees, member of the Natural Resources and Rural Affairs Committee, Joint Legislative Budget Committee, Joint Committee on Capital Review, DNA Task Force and Joint Selected Committee on Corrections.

Some of the honors Bee has received include the 2007 Legislator of the Year Award from the Arizona Association of Community Health Centers and the 2006 National Legislator of the Year Award from the Real Estate Advocacy Group for States in recognition of his leadership in passing the largest tax cuts in Arizona’s history. Tim is a member of several associations including the National Council of State Legislators, Congressional Conference on Civic Education, Council of State Governments-West Executive Committee, and the Council of State Governments Border Legislative Conference.