The two candidates who are vying to represent North Idaho in Congress for the next two years had their one and only face-to-face debate last night, and it was televised statewide. But many missed it. Why? It was up against both the second game of the World Series, and the popular new “Desperate Housewives” program.
But there’s still a way to see U.S. Rep. Butch Otter debate challenger Naomi Preston, at your convenience. Idaho Public Television has posted the entire debate on its website, at www.idahoptv.org
. That means you can go to the site and see the debate from start to finish, including these highlights:
• During a segment where the two question each other, Preston asks Otter whether he got a flu shot. His answer: Yes.
• Otter asks Preston to name a section of the Patriot Act that she would fight, and she can’t come up with one.
• Otter defends his decision to campaign in eastern Idaho last week rather than appear at another debate with Preston. Eastern Idaho isn’t in the 1st Congressional District, but it’s home to the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory, which Otter says he must fight for as an Idaho representative. Preston, noting that Otter is expected to run for governor in two years, says, “It seems that you are already running for governor.”
• Otter rails against illegal immigrants, saying, “I’m not going to reward them for breaking the law. There’s plenty of legal ways to get into the United States. All they need to do is stand in line like everybody else.”
• Preston criticizes Otter for focusing on “easing regulations on corporate America,” and says, “This comes as no surprise because the majority of his campaign funding comes from corporate America’s special interest groups.”
• Otter says he’s been fighting in Congress to give Idahoans more say over how things are run. “Time and time again we have seen the agencies back off their heavy-handed tactics in Idaho … in favor of allowing the local folks some initiative at their level,” he says.