Posted: Oct 13, 2012 10:27 PM by MTN News
Updated: Oct 13, 2012 10:27 PM
BOZEMAN - Steve Daines (R) and Kim Gillan (D), the candidates battling for Montana's seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, went head-to-head at a debate in Bozeman tonight.
The candidates took questions from a panel of moderators and questions from the public via social media.
Some of the issues covered tonight included, healthcare, the Farm Bill, Native American issues and foreign policy.
The candidates also had the opportunity to ask each a question.
Gillan pressed Daines on his support of a budget that includes ending "Medicare as we know it," asking what he would say to the Montana seniors and military retirees who would be affected.
Daines countered that the plan is not ending Medicare, but the plan on the table is to make sure people 55 or older will not be touched.
Daines then questioned Gillan about imposing a sales tax on Montanans, asking why she has voted in the past in favor of a sales tax. Gillan said she does not approve of a sales tax going forward, but does support resort tax.
Moderators also asked the candidates about their positions on the wars Iraq and Afghanistan.
"It is time we wrap this up," Daines said, adding that he does not believe it is our role to be nation builders.
"We need to win a war and come home," he said.
"Let's face it, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been all deficit spending," Gillan said. "We need to have a calm hand of diplomacy." She added that is time for the United States to focus on domestic issues.
The final question was whether the candidates support the Farm Bill.
"Yes, I will vote for it," Daines said, adding that the bill is smaller than was four years ago and has been consolidated and made for efficient."
"It's time to pass it," he said.
"Of course I'll support it," Gillan said, adding that "we need a heck of a lot more Montana common sense in Washington."
In her closing statements, Gillan said she has experience working with Republicans and Democrats.
"Send me who has a track record of working with both sides...who will be a strong voice in Montana," Gillan said.
Daines closed by saying he is not going to raise taxes and noting his endorsements.
Prior to tonight's debate 38% voters in an MSUB poll were undecided on this race.