The inclusion of two third-party candidates in the fifth of a string of CD-7 debates Tuesday didn’t stem the now-customary caustic exchanges between Democrat Ed Perlmutter and Republican Rick O’Donnell. Following the pattern of several debates last week, Perlmutter and O’Donnell clashed over social security, immigration and the war in Iraq. They were joined for the first time by Dave Chandler of the Green Party and Roger McCarville of the American Constitution Party.
Although the two major party candidates dominated the debate, the new blood was a welcome diversion from the standard Perlmutter-O’Donnell arguments. After so many recent match-ups between the two candidates, they had few new jabs to deliver. Perlmutter did have one card up his sleeve, however. He unearthed something O’Donnell wrote about how a boy’s last year of high school is best spent patrolling the borders in the National Guard. O’Donnell said he believed in “the wasted senior year,” and that 17-year-olds would benefit from the experience. Perlmutter said O’Donnell had called for mandatory participation from high school boys and noted girls were excluded from the plan. Colorado Confidential plans to investigate the actual contents of the document.
Despite all the peevishness between the Dem and the GOP candidate, the best barb of the debate came from Chandler:
“What Rick wrote about 11 years ago on Social Security, who cares? He’s wrong now on Social Security. Let’s talk about that”
The debate was hosted by Jim Benemann of CBS 4, Aaron Harber of KBDI Channel 12, and Chris Barge of the Rocky Mountain News. It will air Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Channel 12.