Mayoral Candidates Question Each Other At Debate

by Gabe Bullard on July 21, 2010

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Three candidates for Louisville mayor quizzed and criticized each other Wednesday evening during a debate at Bellarmine University.

For the first time, Democrat Greg Fischer, Republican Hal Heiner and independent Jackie Green were allowed to ask each other questions on stage.

Heiner asked Fischer about his 2008 bid for the Senate, and whether the mayor’s office is his second choice. Fischer said both show his desire for public service.

“When you take a look at where the real benefit, the leveraged benefit can take place, it is through government service, through public service,” said Fischer. “Whether it be in the United States Senate or as mayor. Running for the U.S. Senate taught me that I enjoyed this. I like people. I like solving problems.”

Fischer mentioned Heiner’s appearance at a Tea Party rally in April, and asked if he was politically close to Republican candidates for other offices. Heiner responded that such comparisons were irrelevant to Louisville issues.

“I am not running for anybody else’s campaign, on anybody else’s platform or what they stand for or don’t stand for, and, quite frankly, an analysis of various candidates at any level or any party on their positives or negatives of their backgrounds, quite frankly, is inappropriate in a mayor’s race,” said Heiner.

Independent Jackie Green asked Heiner and Fischer to explain how their policies were different from each other’s,¬†and in his closing statement, presented himself as the alternative.

“In November, voters will choose either the old business as usual, energy-greedy, energy-dependent local economy, or voters will chose a new energy-lean, energy-independent local economy that can meet the challenges of the future,” he said.

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{ 3 comments }

Steve Magruder July 22, 2010 at 9:54 am

In yesterday’s C-J editorial, they said: “Before last week’s report, building two bridges and fixing Spaghetti Junction was Louisville’s most important civic undertaking. It still is.”

Well, C-J people, including former editorial board chief Hawpe were asking most of the questions at this debate.

Not one question was about “Louisville’s most important civic undertaking.”

Talk about ignoring a HUGE elephant (make that boondoggle) in the room.

The tide must be turning.

Curtis Morrison July 22, 2010 at 12:40 pm

I agree with Gabe’s recap & Steve’s observation.
Furthermore, Heiner’s declaration that backgrounds don’t matter is possibly somewhat related to the information about his that I posted on my blog this morning.

John Hartmann July 23, 2010 at 9:57 am

It seemed to me that neither Heiner nor Fischer could adequately answer Jackie’s questions about how the Republican and the Democrat differ in several important policy stands. They are the same on building the bridges boondoggel, the same on laying 23 lanes of concrete on Spagetti Junction, the same on developing Louisville’s green space. In a gathering just a few weeks ago in the German-Paristown neighborhood Heiner actually admitted that the two major parties stands on the issues were pretty much indistinguishable. He didn’t manage to admit it again in front of this Bellarmine audience. Jackie leads in intelligence in this race and he has the best vision for Louisville if only some of the powers that be here would let him speak his message to the citizens of Louisville, instead of trying to marginalize him by not inviting him to forums as the other two candidates are. And this is ok with Fischer. So much for Fischer and his claims for openess and inclusion in government. Heiner and Fischer both need to stand up against this rotten treatment when Jackie is denied access to speak at mayoral forums. They dishonor themselves by not doing so and they dishonor democracy in Louisville. Citizens have a right to be heard and certainly Jackie Green as a mayoral cadidate does. To me its a dishonor that makes them less than adequate to be my Mayor. I’ve seen Jackie Green stand up for his fellow candidates but there is not a word from the Dem or the Repub when it comes to standing up for Jackie Green. Are they afraid of him? But, of course, Fischer and Heiner are considered the “major” candidates according to the Courier-Journal. And WHAS 11 seems to agree that Jackie should be marginalized. What is wrong here folks!??! Well, their not my major candidates and I believe citizens of Louisville are missing out on hearing the most progressive, bold, honest, candidate, Jackie Green, who’s vision for the needs of Louisville’s future stand at sharp contrast to the others because Jackie wants us to survive as resiliant citizens with a city that works! Mass transit for all citizens who have no way to get to work, to the doctor, and including all of us who should be concerned about Climate Change enough to get on the bus!! Jackie is not a single issue candidate and you wouldn’t know that unless you get to hear what else he has to say. But can you in a City where big money keeps you from hearing him? Don’t settle for this Louisville. Demand that Jackie Green be heard!! Demand it!!

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