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Elections & Politics

Senate candidates' heated debate reflects tone of the campaign

Mike Conroy
Associated Press

Senate candidates Joe Donnelly and Richard Mourdock spent most of their first debate Monday attacking each other, while Libertarian Andrew Horning called for voters to move away from the status quo. 

From the very first question of the debate, Mourdock and Donnelly sparred, attacking each other’s positions as much as they touted their own.  Topics included tax reform, the role of government and the future of programs like Social Security and Medicare.  But throughout the entire debate both major party candidates appealed to moderate Republicans or the so-called “Lugar Republicans.” 

Donnelly says he’s the only one with a bipartisan record.

“One of the things we have to do is continue to work on jobs.  It’s the most critical thing of all to make sure everything goes right with our Hoosier state.”

But Mourdock says Donnelly’s attempts to paint him as someone who can’t work across the aisle simply isn’t true.

“I wouldn’t see one of the most important things I’ve done as state treasurer is helping to set up a college savings plan that’s increased by ten times the number who are now saving for college and I worked with Democrats to do that.”

Andrew Horning says Mourdock's and Donnelly’s bickering is proof the system is broken and that, as an outsider, he’s the only one who can change it. 

“I’m the guy on the outside of this argument.  I would be the guy on the outside when it comes to the whole system of Washington being corrupt and we all know that it’s corrupt.”

The three candidates will have one more debate next week.

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