Press Release

March 13, 2023

Media relations
Jayme Nicholas
(312) 750-7254
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ABC7 Chicago, in Partnership With Leagues of Women Voters of Chicago, Illinois, and Univision Chicago, To Broadcast and Stream Mayoral Debate With Runoff Candidates

“Vote 2023: The Race for Chicago Mayor: The People’s Forum,” Thursday, March 16, at 7 P.M.

Anchors/Reporters Judy Hsu and Ravi Baichwal To Lead Hourlong, Commercial-Free Debate

Commercial-Free Debate To Air Live Thursday, March 16, on ABC7’s Digital 7.2 Channel From 7:00–8:00 P.M. and Streams Live on, ABC7’s 24/7 Digital Stream, the ABC7 News App, ABC7 Facebook and YouTube Channel

Debate Will Air Friday, March 17, on ABC7 Chicago’s Main Channel 7.1 From 10:35–11:35 P.M.; Repeat Sunday, March 19 From 4:00–5:00 P.M. on 7.1

ABC7, Chicago’s most watched television station and the premier broadcaster of countless local debates for more than two decades, will showcase LIVE and COMMERCIAL-FREE, “VOTE 2023: THE RACE FOR CHICAGO MAYOR:  THE PEOPLE’S FORUM,” Thursday, March 16, from 7 p.m. -8 p.m. at the ABC7 Studios, 190 North State Street. ABC7 Eyewitness News anchors Judy Hsu and Ravi Baichwal will lead the 60-minute, commercial-free debate between the last two candidates in the Chicago mayoral runoff election in April, Brandon Johnson and Paul Vallas. The candidates will square off as they also answer questions from ABC7 political reporter Craig Wall and Univision Chicago anchor Alex Hernandez. Various Chicago community groups have been invited to be part of the studio audience and may have an opportunity to ask questions. 

“VOTE 2023: THE RACE FOR CHICAGO MAYOR: THE PEOPLE’S FORUM” will air live on ABC7’s digital channel 7.2 on Thursday, March 16, from 7:00-8:00 p.m. and will also stream live on, ABC7’s 24/7 digital stream, the ABC7 News App, ABC7 YouTube channel and Facebook. Then, on Friday, March 17 from 10:35 p.m.-11:35 p.m., the debate will air on ABC7’s main channel 7.1. with a repeat broadcast on Sunday, March 19 from 4:00-5:00 p.m. on 7.1. 

The commercial free debate will also be translated and aired live on Univision’s digital platforms and on UNIMAS (WXFT-TV) on Sunday, March 19at 4 p.m.

According to ABC7 Chicago President and General Manager John Idler, “In this our second mayoral debate, voters will now have the opportunity to focus closely on the two runoff candidates and their plans to govern our city.   The candidates will field questions from our moderator and panelists, and they also will hear from a diverse mix of civic organizations who will ask questions about issues important to the communities they serve.”

Community organizations planning to attend:

  • Access Living
  • ACLU Illinois
  • Chicago Federation of Labor
  • Chicago Coalition for the Homeless
  • Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
  • Chicago Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights
  • Chicago United
  • Chicago Urban League
  • Chicago Votes
  • Chinese American Service League (CASL)
  • El Valor
  • Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • League of Women Voters of Chicago
  • Metropolitan Family Services
  • Mikva Challenge
  • Mujeres Latinas en Acción
  • Rainbow PUSH
  • Shriver Center on Poverty Law
  • Southeast Environmental Taskforce
  • YWCA Metropolitan Chicago

About ABC7/WLS-TV Chicago 
ABC7/WLS-TV Chicago is the No. 1 local news source and most-watched television station in Chicago. With top-rated daily newscasts spanning decades and the largest social media presence in the market with more than 2.6 million Facebook followers, ABC7 Eyewitness News provides breaking news, investigative reporting, weather, politics, traffic and sports in the multiplatform space to Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana. Named Best News Operation by the Associated Press for four consecutive years, ABC 7 Eyewitness News produces “Chicago Proud,” a series of features that spotlights everyday heroes in and around Chicago. The station also produces the highest-rated New Year’s Eve special in Chicago, holiday kickoff special “The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival,” syndicated to a national audience, as well as the award-winning program series “Our Chicago,” which showcases the city’s diversity and highlights contributions in the Black, Hispanic, Asian, LGBTQ+ communities, among others. Every Friday, Windy City Weekend, entertains while giving Chicagoans everything they need to know about what’s happening in the city. ABC 7 is the only Chicago station producing and broadcasting parades representing Chicago’s rich cultural history. In addition to producing town halls focused on current social issues, the station has a long and proud tradition of broadcasting political candidate debates keeping Chicago’s electorate informed. ABC7’s outreach efforts include annual partnerships with the Red Cross for life-saving blood drives, one of the biggest one-day drives in the country and, most recently, spearheading an effort to raise more than $1.5 million for area food pantries.  


Media Contact:
Jayme Nicholas
(312) 750-7254