- Screenshot from Pennsylvania Cable Network
The Pennsylvania gubernatorial debate in 2018 was a disaster. It was hosted by longtime Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek, and he went on a long rant about the Catholic Church, interrupted the candidates several times, and opined way too much. It was the race’s only debate, the only option for Pennsylvanians to see Gov. Tom Wolf go face-to-face with challenger Scott Wagner about the problems afflicting our commonwealth.
So, as I am prone to do, I dragged Trebek on Twitter, which even got me quoted in the Washington Post. The debate story became exclusively about how terrible a job Trebek did.
I still think the debate sucked, but I am here to apologize to Trebek.
On March 6, Trebek announced in a video that he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. The survival rate is only 9 percent.
I am sorry because Trebek took a risk with upending the standard for a political debate, apologized later for his performance, and maybe I should have focused more on Wagner’s outlandish statements. It was just a debate, and Wagner had no real chance at winning the election anyway.
I am also sorry out of a longtime love of Jeopardy! and the hours of enjoyment Trebek’s quick wit has given me. Above all else, I am apologetic out of sorrow. I know Trebek, who is in his late 70s, would have to retire eventually, but I will miss him.
Cancer sucks. It took my grandfather at 62, and I don’t want Trebek to have to go through that pain. Sorry, Alex. Here’s to your quick recovery.