By Justin Cox

Killeen Daily Herald

With just weeks before early voting begins on Oct. 20, the players in the race for the House District 55 seat will face-off in a public forum.

Thursday marks the first of at least two, and possibly more, public forums, whwhere Republican nominee Ralph Sheffield and Democrat nominee Sam Murphey are expected to attend and be matched up one-on-one.

Thursday's event is from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Central Texas Homebuilders facility in Harker Heights, located at 445 E. Central Texas Expressway. It is put on by the Harker Heights Chamber of Commerce Governmental Affairs Committee.

Not since before the March 4 primary elections have any candidates engaged in a public forum with one another. Thursday's forum will be the first since February, after a torrent of forums in the first couple of months of the year involving the four Republican candidates.

Sheffield participated in about a dozen such forums during those months. It will be Murphey's second, who was typically not allowed to engage in the active discussion portions of the questioning in most of the GOP forums. He did take part in a forum at the Central Texas Council of Governments building on Feb. 21, and often played the off card in the views on Central Texas issues as the four Republicans often agreed.

The next forum is scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 30 in Belton, sponsored by the Bell Freedom Foundation. It will be held in the main conference room of the CTCOG building at 2180 N. Main St.

For those interested in attending the Heights forum Thursday, contact the chamber at (254) 699-4999 or e-mail at There is a fee and an RSVP necessary for the event.

Contact Justin Cox at or (254) 501-7568.

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