Everything You Need to Know About Tonight’s Big Mayoral Debate

It's the one and only televised debate in the Philadelphia mayor's race.

the seven people who want the big office at City Hall will square off in a live debate tonight on Fox 29

The seven people who want the big office in this building will square off tonight in “You Decide: Philadelphia’s Next Mayor, The Democratic Primary Debate” (Getty Images)

Unless you’ve been to one of the various mayoral candidate forums around the city, you’ve never had the chance to see all of the mayoral candidates in one place. That all changes tonight with the first and only televised primary debate for Philadelphia mayor.

Fox 29 and Temple University are joining forces to present “You Decide: Philadelphia’s Next Mayor, The Democratic Primary Debate.” The 90-minute debate starts at 6:30 p.m inside the Temple Performing Arts Center at 1837 North Broad Street.

You can actually attend the event in person. (It’s easily accessible from the Broad Street Line.) Organizers are offering free tickets here, and as of 2 p.m., some were still available.

Those aforementioned forums weren’t really debates, and you can probably expect at least a few sparks to fly at tonight’s event. Fox 29 anchor Jason Martinez will be on deck as moderator to keep those sparks to a minimum, and Fox 29 on-air talent Shiba Russell, Thomas Drayton and Jeff Cole will ask questions of the candidates. Fox 29 reporter Shawnette Wilson will field questions from the audience. Expect questioning to focus on crime, schools, the economy, and quality-of-life issues.

So just who is participating in the Fox 29 debate? All seven of the remaining candidates generally considered to be viable, some more than others:

Amen Brown
Jeff Brown
Allan Domb
Derek Green
Helen Gym
Cherelle Parker
Rebecca Rhynhart

With so many candidates, it’s a little hard to say who might “win” this debate. But generally speaking, candidates should be less concerned with outperforming their opponents and more concerned with saying things they might later regret or cracking under pressure of an attack. Those are the kinds of things voters will remember and that other candidates will exploit as much as possible.

Naturally, you can watch this live on Fox 29. If you don’t have cable or a digital antenna, watch via Fox 29’s livestream. If you have issues there, Tubi, Amazon News and YouTube are also carrying it.

Want to learn more about the candidates before the debate? Be sure to check out our Ultimate Voter’s Guide to the 2023 Philadelphia Mayoral Race.