Washington Policy Center and Young Professionals at GU will host its annual debate at 7 p.m. on Monday in the Cataldo Globe Ballroom. The debate is the first of two parts, with the second being held Tuesday, at Washington State University.
The subjects of the debate will be tax policies, such as income tax, carbon tax and business tax, fitting as the event takes place on Tax Day. Experts on both sides of the political spectrum will take both moderator and audience questions on the topics.
Jack Bell, president of Young Professionals at GU, hopes the debate will be civilized.
“The debate is more about gaining knowledge than who won,” Bell said.
Like the previous year, the debate will have a large focus on informing those in the audience on the views of both sides.
The idea is that students will attend with an open mind, so they may make up their own minds about the subject.
“We want to introduce our students to public policy, so that they can inform their own opinion,” Bell continued.
On the side of less taxation are guests Dan Mitchell and Michael Baumgartner. Mitchell is the chairman of the Center for Freedom and Prosperity. He also worked at The Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute, two prominent political think tanks. Baumgartner is the Spokane County treasurer. He previously served as a state senator for eight years.
The side of more taxation will be represented by Jeff Hammond and John Beck. Hammond has spent years as an economic policy director for New York Sen. Chuck Schumer and former Secretary of State John Kerry when he was a Massachusetts senator. Beck is a professor of economics at Gonzaga. He has served on Washington state’s tax structure committee.
“Each side has one local person and one outside person,” Beck said. “I volunteered because my field is public finance and my expertise is state and local finance.”
The event is free, however, to attend one must first register on washingtonpolicy.org.