Gabler, Straub set to debate at candidate forum Oct. 18

State Rep. Matt Gabler, R-Elk/Clearfield, and Frank Straub, Democratic candidate for the 75th Legislative District in the state House, will debate and discuss their positions on issues at acandidate forum hosted by the Elk County Tea Party. The event will take place Monday, Oct. 18 at 7 p.m. at the Red Fern on the Million Dollar Highway in Fox Twp. The public is welcome.Dave Parsons, radio host from 98.9 FM The River, will act as moderator. Members of the Tea Party and the public will submit questions for the candidates to answer. They will have two minutes to respond to an initial question, with one minute allowed for rebuttal. Mark Wagner, spokesperson for the Tea Party and chairman of the forum, said the process should allow for a smooth event where a number of topics can be discussed. "We want to make sure that each candidate has sufficient time to explain his position on the questions," Wagner said. He said the forum is a nonpartisan event and encouraged area residents to attend. "There are a lot of questions as to how government is responsible to the citizens in the area, and we just wanted to make sure that the people in the community had a chance to listen to the candidates speak their minds," Wagner said. He added that they are prepared to accommodate 400 people at the event and that it will be broadcast live on the radio at 98.9 FM The River, B94 (93.9) WKBI-FM, and 97.5 FM The Hound. Gabler, currently serving as the state representative for the 75th Legislative District, said he anticipates a good, informational debate. "I'm looking forward to the opportunity to present my proven record to reduce out-of-control spending while working for a more honest, open and accountable government," Gabler said of the event. Straub, candidate for the 75th Legislative District House seat, said, "The Tea Party forum will be a good opportunity to explain how I plan to put my business experience to work for the people of Elk and Clearfield counties. I'm looking forward to this chance to talk about my ideas to create local jobs and make sure that gas drilling is safe and responsible."