O'Rourke, Carrasco face off tonight

Debate organized by Burges HS students

EL PASO, Texas - House of Representatives candidates Beto O'Rourke and Barbara Carrasco have met up more than a dozen times in political forums and debates since the primary election May 29.

Wednesday night's congressional debate at Burges High School looks to be the final matchup of this format ahead of Election Day on Nov. 6.

Carrasco, a Republican, and O'Rourke, a Democrat, are running for the 16th Congressional District seat. Silvestre Reyes, who held the office since 1997, lost his seat after being defeated by O'Rourke in the primary election.

Students in John Seymour's dual-credit government class organized the debate, drawing up the format and questions.

"We came with with a poll that we passed out to 170 to 200 students," said Nicholas Provenghi, who is a senior at Burges. "We had a list of issues, such as the economy, health care, same-sex marriage, education reform and a little write-in spot for 'other.' And based on the results of that poll, we came up with the questions."

Provenghi said the debate is a public service to the community as well as an opportunity for student organizers to receive credit.

"This is a big part of our grade. This is one of the requirements we have to do for this class," he added.

The debate begins at 7 p.m. at Burges, located at 7800 Edgemere Way. It will be moderated by ABC-7 anchor and reporter Stephanie Valle. It is open to the public and free to attend.

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