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Patrick Says He'll Debate Van de Putte in Austin

UPDATED: Lieutenant governor candidates Dan Patrick and Leticia Van de Putte on Tuesday agreed to debate in Austin next month.

State Sens. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, and Dan Patrick, R-Houston, will face off against each other in the general election for lieutenant governor.

Updated, 7:15 p.m.:

Van de Putte has also agreed to the Austin debate, selecting Sept. 24 as the date. (The Tribune's proposed debate would take place at the studios of KLRU, which had offered Sept. 24 or Sept. 27 as possible dates.)

“I look forward to hearing from Dan on the rest of my proposal," Van de Putte said in a statement. "One down, at least four to go."

Original story:

State Sen. Dan Patrick, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, said on Tuesday that he would debate his Democratic opponent, state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, in Austin next month.

The debate would be hosted by The Texas Tribune, which has proposed two possible days in late September. 

Patrick told the Tribune on Tuesday that the Austin debate would be the only one he would participate in, citing the two gubernatorial debates in which Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott and Democratic state Sen. Wendy Davis are scheduled to participate.

"It's kind of like the way the presidents and vice presidents work," Patrick said.

The Van de Putte campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Her campaign sent Patrick a letter in July proposing debates in San Antonio, Austin, Houston Dallas-Fort Worth and the Rio Grande Valley to be hosted by various news outlets.

The Van de Putte campaign had initially proposed that the Austin debate be held during The Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 20. Both Van de Putte and Patrick are scheduled to participate in separate interviews during the festival.

At the time, Patrick spokesman Alejandro Garcia said the campaign wanted to "establish a debate schedule that is respectful to and complementary of the debates agreed to by the gubernatorial candidates," but the campaign did not agree to any of Van de Putte's proposed debates.

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