On October 29 the two candidates for Congressional District 2, Markwayne Mullin (R) and Rob Wallace (D), met for a debate at Rogers State University in Claremore, Oklahoma. Both campaigns have declared victory, but the voters will make the final decision on November 6.
The first issue that was discussed was the Affordable Healthcare Act. Mullin has promised a vote to repeal it because it is harmful to the nation’s economy. Wallace said that it is too expensive, but repeal would not get through the Senate. Wallace stated that Congress would have to fix it.
Regarding the national debt, Wallace stated that this was the largest threat to the nation. Mullin stated that cutting government spending is the best way to get on top of the debt. Wallace’s solution is putting more people to work.
Both candidates agree that Social Security and Medicare are a promise that should be kept to the people who have paid into them. Wallace accused Mullin of “wobbling” on the issue. Wallace stated that Mullin wants government to get out of Social Security. He also stated that he is against privatization of Social Security and turning Medicare into a voucher system. Mullin stated that the problems with these two programs lie in government mismanagement and people drawing benefits without having paid into it. Mullin stated that these programs are being treated like an entitlement when they are not.
Mullin also stated that raising taxes is not the answer to solving the problem with the deficit. “The government has proved it’s not responsible with the money we’re sending up there, so why should we send them more money?” Wallace responded, “They key to being able to avoid raising taxes has got to be growth in the economy – and not growth on Wall Street. Not growth at the huge business level. Growth out here in the real world. Growth out here where small businesses can expand their payrolls. Growth out here so folks get money in their pockets who have to spend it on daily necessities.”
Wallace criticized Mullin for taking federal stimulus money for his business and for refusing to use the federal E-Verify database to check his employee’s immigration status. Wallace also questioned Mullin’s criticism of the Patriot Act which helps to fight against drug smuggling into the US.
Mullin stated that the choice on November 6 is clearly between a socialist-style country or a republic that was set up by our founding fathers.
Rob Wallace told the audience that he will “stand up to special interests and be a strong voice for the middle class.” He concluded by saying, “You have got to make a decision about who you trust – a decision about who has, from the beginning of this campaign, staked out positions in this campaign and never wavered. You can trust me and you know where I stand. I have been consistent. I am the candidate you can trust.”
For more information on this debate, go to the Tulsa World website.