Forum set for Oct. 14 between Audrey Denney, Doug LaMalfa |

Forum set for Oct. 14 between Audrey Denney, Doug LaMalfa


People can submit questions in advance via The question deadline is noon Tuesday.

The League of Women Voters in Western Nevada County announced Wednesday that the two candidates for the 1st Congressional District of the U.S. House of Representatives — Republican incumbent Doug LaMalfa and Democratic challenger Audrey Denney — will participate in an in-person forum from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 14

The forum is co-sponsored by Nevada County Media, and will be live-streamed on its website:

Janice Bedayn, president of the League of Women Voters of Western Nevada County, said she is grateful for the opportunity to educate voters in the region, in spite of the late timing.

“We have been working on scheduling a forum for U.S. Congress for a while and we are happy that we were able to schedule something,” Bedayn said. “We regret that it was not earlier, before people received their ballots, but again, happy that we were able to do it.”

Bedayn said to her knowledge, this coming Wednesday’s forum will be the only public discussion between Denney and LaMalfa before the Nov. 3 election.

LaMalfa defeated Denney in 2018 by 160,046 to 131,548 votes, almost a 10% difference. That election was the first time LaMalfa lost Nevada and Butte counties after three uninterrupted wins in the district’s 11 counties in 2012, 2014 and 2016.

Bedayn said she believes forums should be mandatory in every election because sharing a room with a candidate to discuss local issues is more informative and engaging than reading about their platforms.

“It’s important for constituents to be able to listen to an exchange of ideas between the two candidates so that they can best understand with whom they most align,” Bedayn said. “I believe forums should be required of all candidates in all elections because it truly is the best way for constituents to understand the vision, values and ideas that the candidates hold.”

Bedayn said her team is collaborating with the League of Women Voters from Butte County and the Redding area to help advertise the event. The forum’s promotion includes a call for constituent-submitted questions, Bedayn explained.

Community members from all 11 counties will be asked to contribute, Bedayn said. Then, the League will prioritize and summarize those that are most asked.

People can submit questions in advance via The question deadline is noon Tuesday.

“The League will determine which questions to ask by considering the topics most touched upon,” Bedayn said. “We make sure all the questions are appropriate and that they are directed toward both candidates, not just one — and that they are not redundant.”

Bedayn said she is interested to see what kind of questions members of the more northern counties ask.

“They might have different concerns,” Bedayn said. “I think it’s going to be lively and I’m looking forward to all the questions.”

Bedayn said the League of Women Voters is a national nonprofit that has local chapters focused on both education and advocacy. Bedayn said the League does not endorse candidates or parties because it is nonpartisan.

“We remain very neutral,” Bedayn said. “Our mission is to educate voters, to advocate for voting rights and make sure everybody is well informed and votes.”

Rebecca O’Neil is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at

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