The two major-party candidates for U.S. Senate debated at the University of Louisville Sunday night. It was one of the most contentious meetings yet between Democrat Jack Conway and Republican Rand Paul.
The debate began with the candidates trading jabs over a recent ad from Conway that brought up pranks Paul was allegedly involved in as a college student. The candidates continued to criticize each other throughout the rest of the hour-long event. On the subject of the health care overhaul law, Paul said Conway should join other Attorneys General in a lawsuit that claims the law is unconstitutional.
“Jack misunderstands the Constitution. He thinks it has to list a right that you not have insurance. He doesn’t understand that the Constitution gives certain powers to the government, but it says those rights not listed are not to be disparaged,” said Paul.
“I’m not going to waste the resources of the taxpayers of Kentucky playing Tea Party politics,” said Conway in response. “If you were to go back and file one of these lawsuits, what you’d be doing, you’d be challenging well-settled law that says that Social Security and Medicare is constitutional.”
Conway frequently brought up previous statements from Paul in an effort to paint the Republican’s small-government platform as too extreme.
“He calls himself a constitutional conservative rather than a libertarian,” said Conway. “He would take us back to a point where we don’t have federal law enforcement, where we don’t have mine safety laws and we question the constitutionality of all these advancements we’ve had since the 1930s.”
Paul said Conway has taken him out of context.
“I’m not for eliminating Social Security. I’m not for eliminating Medicare. And I’m not for eliminating mine safety regulations,” said Paul. “So why don’t you just stop that so we can have an intelligent debate?”
The two agreed on certain parts of an immigration reform plan, and how to handle the construction of a new veterans’ hospital in Louisville.
For more on the debate and background on some of the candidates’ statements, visit The Edit.
The full debate: