Democratic candidate for Governor Pete Gosar said he plans to proceed with regionally placed citizen-driven debates.

Though Governor Matt Mead has declined to participate in the debates that Gosar initially proposed Sept. 5, Gosar said he feels that these types of debates among the candidates for the highest office in the state are vital.

“This is an opportunity to discuss topics in a public forum where Wyoming residents can ask questions directly to the candidates,” Gosar said. “It’s hard to imagine the Governor can’t find time to make this happen since it is something that is important to the voters as it gives them the chance to voice their concerns, ask questions and be able to hear firsthand our viewpoints on matters important to the state and its people.”

Gosar said he hopes Mead will once again reconsider, noting that the Governor also turned down a debate hosted by the League of Women Voters in Jackson this week.

Gosar said his campaign is currently looking for organizations and places to host regional debates, focusing on communities that may not have access to other public debates. Before the Nov. 4 general election, Gosar said he hopes that at least four debates can be hosted and live-streamed on the Internet. Questions during the debates will be taken from the audience in attendance and the audience participating online.

Gosar in a news release said he received an overwhelming response both on social media and those who he visited with across the state in support of regionally placed debates.