Fort Wayne among possible Democratic town hall sites

(Darrin Wright/1190 WOWO 107.5 FM)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Network Indiana): Fort Wayne may get a turn in the Election 2020 spotlight with a presidential town hall.

Neighborhood leaders say they met Monday with a team of producers from MSNBC scoping out whether it’s feasible to do a new kind of town hall. Instead of putting the candidate on a stage, they’re scouting clusters of houses where the candidate could take questions in someone’s living room, and move down the street to another house at each commercial break.

West Rudisill Neighborhood Association president Jim Sack says the cable channel is aiming for a cross-section of voters, including Republicans. He says producers didn’t reveal which candidate would appear, but said it was “one of the more prominent” contenders. He says they’re targeting early June.

MSNBC has broadcast one town hall with New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and plans one next week with California Senator Kamala Harris. An Iowa town hall with New Jersey Senator Cory Booker was planned for Thursday, then postponed.

Fort Wayne is a seemingly unlikely locale for a town hall. Indiana has picked a Democrat for president just twice in the last 80 years. And Indiana’s May primary falls late in the process, when the nominations are usually settled, although that’s been less true recently. In 2016, Donald Trump’s victory over Ted Cruz effectively clinched his nomination, while Bernie Sanders beat Hillary Clinton to keep his pursuit of the Democratic nomination alive. In 2008, Barack Obama’s razor-thin loss to Clinton was widely seen as the end of Clinton’s hopes of overtaking him.

MSNBC hasn’t responded to requests for comment.

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