tv U.S. Senate Debate ABC October 26, 2014 1:00pm-2:01pm EDT
>> this is vote 2014. the new jersey senate to recall debate. >> you now from our 6abc studio the candidates are republican jeffrey bell, and democrat corey booker. our panelist are matt freedman from the star ledger. mary alice delgato. and moderating the debate jim gardner of 6abc. >> hello and thank you for joining us for this debate before the two candidates running for the u.s. senate in new jersey. >> they have gathered for what
we hope will be a wide-ranging and informative discussion in the campaign. each and every candidate will have one minute to answer the question posed by jim myself and the three panelist. they have agreed to one round in which they will ask each other one question and they will make a closing statement. >> let's begin by random drawing our first question goes to mr. bell. mr. bell only five people have been diagnosed with the ebola virus in the united states and each one has a direct connection and obvious connection a first generational connection to the source of contagion are we making too much of this, are we overreacting the government and media and subsequently american or is this an ominous public health issue and what would be the first priority of the federal government.
>> in my opinion the government has underreacted we have under estimate the the easily which this spreads when it gets around. we should have cut off on a temporary basis all flights from the three west african countries involved. president obama has failed and an institution namely the cdc failed by political appointments animal -- screening people in the airports is not enough. i don't think the experts saying it won't help is enough. i think we have to error on the side of caution and aggressive containment of the disease. >> reporter: i want to thank the sponsors and the moderators -- and my opponent, as well the juries at home this is a clear
difference for the new jersey voters in the choice that you have in the election between someone who is obviously about a tea party attacking hardening position as opposed to somebody in the state of crisis that reaches out to find ways to work together. i'm the senator right now and the biggest call to my office is from new jerseyians worried and concerned about the issue. what i have done is make sure after tea party and others look to cut organizations like the cdc they have their funding and join my colleagues on both sides of the i'll to get them $88 million. we have to hold the people accountable. i've been talking to to the cdc and health and human services and going out to the newark airport and working w-89 -- with the christy administration making sure sure the hospitals are prepared. >> mr. booker the shooting at
the canadian parliament complex in ottawa should we heighten fears about lone wolf terror attack. given that new york and new jersey are considered the leading targets for terrorist attacks how would you make sure there are adequate resources given to the state to combat terrorism? >> first and for most the number one time i was invited to the situation room was to work on the challenge of homegrown terrorism. we need to make sure the agencies in charge of protecting them have the ability to do the job. we have to make sure that 0 our local law enforcement officials and state officials have the resources they need to stop the attacks. i have a worry i worry right now while states like new jersey we have good laws in place to try to keep guns out of the
handlesful criminals. we live in a nation someone on a terrorist no fly list, someone can go to virginia and buy a weapon without background checks where my opponent has lived. we have to tighten up common sense legislation to keep the guns out of the chris and terrorists. >> i'm astounded that anyone would turn a situation in canada into a sermon on gun control. this is a worldwide problem it's not a matter of individual criminal or terrorist. probe is reluctant to call this act of terrorism. that's partly of the problem. we have to be honest built nature of the problem and the extent of it. we have to take greater measures to prevent this from happening to screen more people coming into the country. more important it's a worldwide
war and to say it isn't a war as president obama insists on doing whether it's the domestic war or whales happening with islamic state it's just unconscionable. we have to be truthful about the nature of the problem and much more active both overseas and here, it's better to do it overseas before it gets here. >> mr. booker do you support putting american troops on the grounds to fight isis and if so would it be for a limited time period or open-ended. >> isis has been cutting swaths through the middle east putting in danger ethnic minorities and doing harsh and horrendous things to women. at the end of the day i disagree with the president he should have come to congress to have an open debate about our commitments to the crisis. i'm a believer they must be stopped before he with rush off to war let's make sure we have
learned the hard lessons in the past let's make sure we have clear objectives and contingency plans and make sure we have all the resources to do the job and that our allies are footing some of the bill and bearing the burden. america can't rush off into this we need an open discussion and debate about what the strategy and tactics are and make sure we're doing this in quader nation with our allies and make sure we have a plan to stop this isis threat. >> mr. bell your response. >> again i'm astounded that you would say that the priorities to get the allies to spend money on this. there are no allies that can take leadership. america has on the only 21st century military in the west to say we have to wait for allies to spend money. we have to have a debate in congress concerning that a declaration of war exists. that is what we need to do.
we have to have a debate about the strategic objective not the ways and means and type of bombing not whether troops are deployed, some are but that's i will relevant to the issue of what as is our streak objective. roosevelt was a great war president because he knew the only policy toward the nazi and japanese empire was uncongressional surrender. -- unconditional surrounder. we have to annihilate isis before they annihilate us. >> mr. bell, more than 30,000 uncompanied minors have trarveldz into the united states states -- traveled into the united states from central america. they are in new jersey, 1500 are living in new jersey. would you support any sort of plan that integrates them in our
society and schools since their families have been here already some for many years or any plan that will give temporary or special status for these families and children? >> we have to be compassionate toward those who have sent across the border by parents who are desperate either uncompanied or companied by coyotes, but i think it illustrates the failure of the obama administration. when the dream act failed to pass, president obama went out and gave am necessity to young people who came -- am amobi okugonesty gave am amobinesty to the young
people. we have to change the immigration with a legal immigration that has a path to citizenship for those who are here illegal and guest worker program who want to work here temporarily. president obama pays lip service for this. >> for the 125eu9 -- new jersey should not wait anymore and grant special 12589 us to their families. >> i believe we need to help them. we can't act as if they are chris. >> thank you very much. i support the comprehensive bipartisan immigration reform that we've seen going on passed through the senate it involved people from both sides working together that would have helped so many children in new jersey. i support the dreamer's act that has some by partly is -- bipartisan
support that give kids some comfort. my tea party backed friend has shown the attacks he believes in tea party militancy. he mentioned the president attacked him seven times already, that's not what's going to bring us together in washington and move us forward. we need people who don't believe in tea party militantscy but come together on with both sides of the aisle and solve immigration. my opponent wants to retrench and called the case for polarized politics. we don't need more of what's making washington bad we need to bring folks together and move our country forward. >> i would like to answer that, because the senator is unaware that i worked for ten years for by partly is an comprehensive
immigration reform working up for a latino civil rights civil rights organization, the head of the organization called president obama the deporter and chief. he is a complete phoney. i have a track record on working for a bye partly is an immigration bill, i was filmed in the officer of senator ted kennedy in 2007 working on that. it's silly to say that i am a phoney on that. >> mr. booker. i had the privilegeful meeting ted kennedy there's no further apart politics in america than ted kennedy and my opponent. i have a belief someone tells you who are believe them. if they look like a duck and walk like a duck they are a duck. this is a man supported by tea party a man who wrote a case for
polarized politics. if he send him to washington he will not be involved in by partly is an coalition. he told us i believe in tea party military -- militancy. it's time for people to come together and work on solutions to our problems. >> i thought the whole points of working with people is to bring them together on what they can agree on. >> we'll have to move on. the next question is from matt freedman. >> senator that's a good segue into this because with the congressional inaction on immigration, president obama had planned to issue a major executive order to overhaul the system as much second by the end of summer. democrat also who are locked in tough races this year they feared voter backlash and president obama delayed action until after the midterm
election. do you agree with the decision to delay action? >> absolutely not the president was wrong he should have stood up and made the call to do whatever he could to advance what's right for america. i spent the last year travel around the state while my opponent was woulding in a think tank for the last 30 years. when i talk to people in the community they understand we have a problem whether it's people who come to our schools and graduate to you are 0 universities. soonls as soon as as their student reveals is a is up -- visa is up we kick them out. we have an urgent immigration issue there should be no waiting for politics. i didn't support the president's decision i would continue to go to washington to bring people together to make sure we in a unified way solve the problem. >> senator nobody is going to
come together if the president threatens unilateral action. you just advocated something that would foul the immigration debate. having the president do executive action which would drive republicans and everybody else away from the table. you talk a good game on bipartisanship but you don't mean it. >> this is the tea party cry attack bomb pa for all the executive orders that he has done. president obama has done less executive orders from other presidents from jimmy carter to ronald reagan to george bush. this is what he does, he is partly of a movement that's going to be slamming and slandering and not stopping that
issue of people not finding solution the book the case for polarized politics. >> polarization is sometimes a public service because it edge able to voters to see two different points of view. >> let's go on to a question for mr. bell. >> governor christie said he is tired of hearing about the minimum wage. and the focus should be creating jobs. democrats wants to give a raise to the people who earn a minimum wage or less. the minimum wage is 7.25 since 2009. should it be increased. >> high school graduates will be priced out of the market. just the other day i read mcdonlts is have a --
mcdonald's having a decline in profitability because the minimum wage increase is going to technology to replace low wage workers that's counter productive in a job market. >> my opponent said it's a bad time to do what's right. i talked to people in our state and i heard from them. i heard from a guy who had a good minimum wage job, excuse me lost his job and now working in a minimum wage job and has to support his family. talk to people in college who are trying to go to school and work a if you full time job and making the minimum wage and barely making ends meet. it's a good time to do the it for that person and what about the single mom who is working double shift because in new jersey if you work a full time job it's not enough to meet the needs of a family it's a good
time to raise the minimum wage. nobody should work full time and find themselves under the poverty line and go to food banks and rely on public assistance to make ends meet. it's a good time to do things. >> there's a typical of why have we have a jobless recovery. the minimum wage is redistribution. it takes money from one sector and gives i want to another. it has nothing to do with creating jobs. >> the jobless rate in new jersey is 6.5% which is .61% higher than the national average. newark is 1 is%. camden 13.3. the jobless rates are higher than because of all the people who have stopped looking for work. economic recovery or not jobs
tops the lists of most voters list of concerns. what kind of program would you support or create to bring jobs to new jersey? >> well it's not what i would do it's what i have been doing for the last 11 months working on that fundamental idea how to get people back to work in new jersey. that's why i support our community colleges to bring the dollars back to link them to industries and jobs that exist. when i talk to jobs and manufacturers one of the biggest thinks they tell me we need linkses to qualified leadership. bringing back resources to train our workers is important. i talk to businesses they say the biggest issue is access to capital. i talk to our major industrials is a tax rate that is fair i've been working to lower the
corporate tack rate. we've been doing -- tax rate. i've been doing everything possible to make sure that a woman who works a fulltime job the same job as a man should get the same pay. we can grow our economy from the middle class out. >> everything that was just mentioned involves an companionful government programs some of them may be good programs, but we've had 6 years of trying to stimulate the economy from 2008 to 2014 by increased spending printing more money, the economy hadn't been stimulated. we don't have as many full time jobs today as wed at the end of recession. there are a few part-time jobs. this is not growth it's not stimulus, it has failed. he agrees with president obama's approach spend more government money and print money to fund
that spending. it hadn't worked if you want to try something different then you'll have to vote for me. >> are you saying we're not in the midst of a an economic recovery. >> it's a jobless recovery. it's the weakest economic recovery in american history and the reason is that small business hadn't been able to expand because of federal reserve zero interest rate policy which has been going on for 6 years which the president wants to continue along with the fed chairman. that's the biggest reason small business can't expand. the banks that lend to them on or the sidelines because they can't make any money even with a good loan. >> pigging backing on the question about jobs, i want to turn our attention to legislation, we know that a third of the casinos there have closed many are bankrupt, nearly 8,000 jobs have been lost. what will you do to yeat more jobs in southern new jersey and
make sure atlantic city thrives once again. >> stop the hemorrhaging and i am totally 'posed to have an idea to have ago casino in northern new jersey. having another casino will solve no problems and make everything in atlantic city worse. we need to atlantic city remain at least for the state of new jersey a destination. that's why i don't favor sports gambling on the internet. if we're going to have sports gambling it should be only in atlantic city and a few racetracks. we have to stop the hemorrhaging. i was in atlantic city a few days ago at a forum senator booker kohl's not to attend. -- chose not to attend. there's a cap that as he is you can't stop a business without numerous problems of regulation and taxation and permits and you can't get the lines of credit
needed especially for a new business, that's the first thing we have to solve. atlantic city and the rest of the state are suffering heavily from the national problem. >> i disagree with my opponent. the first thing we need to do to stop the hemorrhaging is to oppose a casino in the north. we have to help the people in atlantic city, i sat down with the republican mayor of that down brought in the department of labor and others, i said if the casinos close let's be pro active and get grants and help the veterans who are involved in the layoffs to get the special programs veterans can get. my opponent says he poses federal government intervention. if that's the case, why as he is going back to washington, i'm going to bring back resources. we can invest in in
infrastructure. that's why i support improvement to the atlantic city airport to bring people there. i've worked with republican governor christie on this as well as the airlines. i believe expanding patco light rail that will bring business and economic growth. it's smart strategic solutions that begin with the first and foremost having a senator that's going to be there for people in trouble. >> it may be in the discussion phase, but only in the discussion phase but will you support a casino in northern new jersey? >> reporter: i would not support a a casino fits going to hurt atlantic city. there are some people who say atlantic city could share in that revenue. before i make a universal against something the key thing is to help atlantic city. >> i have to ask you one more time. will you support a casino in north jersey? >> reporter: i will not support
a casino in northern new jersey fit hurts atlantic city. >> due support legalizing sports gambling? >> i'm with the governor, it helps to bring revenue into the state. it's an illegal activity let's regulate and tax it and get the benefit in new jersey. >> going back to new york they recently adopted municipal i.d. card for undocumented residents to bring them out of the shadows and get benefits from the city. would you support a single i.d. card system for undocumented families. >> i do not like a universal i.d. card. the social security card is close to doing that, it's a big mistake especially with the surveillance issues we have with the obama dmrks.
comprehensive immigration reform that erects a legal system to replace the illegal system. those little steps like new york city i wouldn't repeal it, it isn't the answer. it has to be the negotiation between republicans and democrats and cirrus effort to a-- serious effort to achieve comprehensive reform. >> we've driven people into the shadows. i've talked to mayors from patterson to camden. chris prey on the people because they will not go to the police and report it. we need to have a system that brings folks out of the shadow to them work toward a path to citizenship. we have to have a plan told that. that has to come from washington d.c. voters have to make a which i
choice, who can best do it in the trenches and do it? the tea party is a block towards broad based coalition for change. my tea party candidate would make what's wrong with washington worse. of the. >> i thought all we needed was an executive order. >> you don't have to interrupt me what i am talking. we need to make sure we have stability back in washington not the kind of aggressive tea party attacks. >> would you support a drivers license like other states have? >> i would supports comprehensive system to this reform. we're on the verge to do that if we can get the tea party in the house to set down. >> the executive order is what he said is the solution, if it's a solution that comes out of washington but it's something that will foul the move for getting the program the problem out of the way with a comprehensive solution, i'm a negotiator, i worked with liberal democrats to achieve immigration reform in the bush years, we failed, but it was a
major good faith effort. he agrees with president obama no negotiations are needed issue an executive order that's not my idea of bipartisanship. >> we have the next question for mr. bell. >> mr. bell you've spoken out against gay marriage. we've had it for a year legal in new jersey and it's about about to be legal in the majority of states now, do you believe any harm has come from this. even though you support a federal amendment to define marriage between a man and woman due think that gay marriage is expansion and universe in the country is inevitable. >> i don't think anything is inevitable. the new jersey was denied that debate. 89 judges sailtd -- the said the
founders wrote it into the constitution. i think you have to have a vote which governor christie favored but he was overruled. every new gay marriage state was imposed by state or federal judges. it sets up a repeat of row v wade which expanded the abortion issue and prolonged it for over 40 years. it's a terrible idea and i think i've been very honest sunny matt, i believe it's a self every e evident truth that marriage includes a husband and wife. that's my position, but worse is the idea of imposing this by unelected judges. >> do you believe any harm has come out of it. >> ink taking the world husband out of the legal definition of marriage is a terrible mistake especially tail light when we
know that in tact families, mother father and kids are the greatest income program there is and antiwelfare program there is. and taking the word hulls is going to in-- husband out will increase the breakup of the family. >> my view is different. he wants us to take us back to a time before row v wade. he wants to take away a right of two people who love each other. i would not be here right now if the rights of a can americans back in the 1960s were put up to votes for what's best or what's right. fundamental rights are just that. we have a constitution, 14th amendment that says equal protection under the law. you can't have a law that discriminates against one group in favor of another.
or discriminates against anyone. well get so much further and understand that we're all equal under the law and equal to be successful. i'm not going to washington to deny them basic rights. we shall let people who love each and every other the right to get maryland. >> mr. booker, the department of justice has named 5 # colleges under -- 55 colleges under investigation for the way they handled sex assault complaints including princeton university. this an area that congress can influence and should influence and how or is this best left to the institutions? >> well, obviously we have a problem like we have right now in the nation, colleges institutions are not doing enough. i'm tired in this county not taking sexual assault and domestic violence as serious as we should. congress has an obligation to make sure we're seeing fairness
and justice play out. sutiondz as you said yourself these stories are agreej -- egregious. i'm going to to fight against sexual violence and sexual assault. we have a system right now the nba and major league baseball don't have tax exempt status, a lot of other sports lesion do i meant to eliminate that tax exempt status i want to sake that money and invest it in domestic programs. >> this is the obama booker vision, which if anything neetdz doing it must be done in washington. after the last couple of years when we've had the internal revenue service, the "d" cd, the secret service letting people into the white house the director having to resign, all of these institutions failing
under president obama whom senator booker supports in almost every area expengs and he thinks even something as obscure as rules in the local colleges will be better handled by washington. of course there's a problem but don't you think once in a while you should let normal people and local government work it out to the best of their ability. they have a better track record than residents. >> when new jersey resident also come to me with a crisis or problem, i want to help them do something about them. college campuses have not been dealing with this problem. it hurts me to think there will be a senator going down to washington with extreme views on women and gays and others, when folks come to him for help to get him involved even if it's just picking up a phone and letting the president of the
college know this is wrong and we'll be watching i'll be one of those united states senators when new jersey come to me with a problem, sexual assault and domestic violence i'll stand up and be there for them. >> the candidates have agreed to one round in which they ask each other question. we'll start with mr. booker's question to mr. bell. >> i want to stick to that subject we come back to you. you want to deny women their freedoms and rights to make their own healthcare decisioning even if extreme cases if case someone is raped. why don't you let women in extreme cases of rape make their own decisions why should she rely on men like you tell em what they can do with their babies. >> unborn babies have a body
they have a full compliment of dna the human genome. corey booker was once a well cell, and normally grows up to be a healthcare, maybe a u.s. senator which i give you credit for. i have a hard time looking a woman in the face and saying even though you became pregnant through a rape you should carry your child to term because it has a body and its own life. i would find it harder to go to the miss pennsylvania who has worked for rape victims but who herself was the product of a rape and tell her you don't deserve to live. >> all right now mr. bell you have a question for mr. booker. >> senator the watershed authorities problems during your administration have been coming
up a little more frequently lately i would like to ask you a simple question to clear things up, which is on channel 5 in new york last week you said, this week on wednesday, you said that the $700,000 and 6 individual payments, 689 to be exact came saturday of you took your ownership with you it was a buyout and they didn't have all the money all at once. i ask you is there a document in writing that supress files what that arrangement is? >> my opponent has spent a lot of time down in virginia and hadn't paid attention much. i appreciate him trying to play ketchup now. whistles going to run for mayor i decided i would stem down from
that business and take my ownership stake. i agreed with my partners that it would be valued at a certain amount when i left i would be entitled to that lump sum. the law firm did not have in a lump sum to give me so they agreed to pay it out over a course of time. that agreement was done as well as that document. >> could you show it to the public. >> it contains confidential financial information so it's not necessary. >> you don't think a document that gave 700,000 over 6 years is there some kind of privilege you have? >> $700,000 in annual payments is not what happened. i had a during the time amount which i made clear through my tax records and showed the public what i did. if we're looking at levels of transparency of the two men
here i've given 16 years of my tax returns and my financial documents. you haven't matched my level of transparency. my tax returns are online, yours are not. >> three years. >> why your most recent tax returns you only let people see 89 first two pageses where you can't see the source of income. >> meet the level of transparency yourself meet the same level. trans parents. >> we have a lot of ground to cover, let's move on. >> mr. bell, some disturbing statistics from the bureau institute of justice you may be familiar with them. the united states represents 4% of the world population, it has 2r50% of the world's prison population. the united states spends 6 times inasmuch as on prisons than it
does in education. in new jersey the state spends $18,600 per public school student and $54,800 per inmate, is this fixable and if so how. >> jim i'm not an advocate of using dollar amounts to say how well this country is going this country had a big success story which is the crime explosion we had in the 60s and 70s was checked. annual overuse of prison might have been part of that. we have to be careful of people who were accused of violent crime out. they may have pled to nonviolent crimes. most prosecutors don't go to court to get those convictions. i would not like to see a person who pled to a violent crime get out scott free.
>> reporter: this is a broken system. we have 25% of the globe's imprisoned people. i agree violent people should be behind bars, but on 70% of those people are nonviolent offender. this is a failed drug war. it's so bad if you go to jail drug a.i. -- addicted, 20% of the people get help. there are common sense solution that could relieve taxpayers of the burden we're spending a quart of a trillion dollars a year for a broken system. it should be going to the schools and infrastructure. that's why when i want to washington so dealing with this problem work are working with rand paul and others to reduce the prison population and make the streets safer and better
invest taxpayer dollars or return it to taxpayers because all of us spend hundreds of dollars to support it. >> what are the common sense solutions? >> get drug treatment to people who have addictions helping them when they come out to get connections to work. we have a system that has a reaciddism rate that doesn't correct. mississippi has common sense solution and the crime has gone down. these are the solution we can do if we work together across aisle. that's why i put for the a major piece of legislation endorsed on the right and left save taxpayer dollars and safer streets and elevate human potential. >> judging his solution by normal the legalization of
marijuana. >> i would love to talk about that. >> i exponent doesn't poetry million marijuana. -- don't support medical marijuana where we have sick people in new jersey who can't get access to the drug. i support pot laws that will help families in new jersey that i talked to they are going to terrible trials. it's being slowed down and slow walked by the administration. >> by governor christie? >> by governor christie. >> reporter: i'll tell you another piece of legislation i put in on marijuana with republican rand paul to say federal government and states that have marijuana laws like colorado and washington we shouldn't be using federal
dollars to prosecute people in our nate. sthls -- this is a way to save taxpayers dollars. >> i'm going cut cut you off there. >> i would like to pivot to the fatal shooting of michael brown and the choke hold death of eric garner in staten island. these cases reignited tensions between the police in the minority community and exposed deep mistrust with police. there's a gallop poll that's shows 64% of the people have no confident in the police. >> i want to exples -- compress my condolences to the families
of the people who died. i believe there are common sense things we can do in criminal justice reform to actually repair that problem. take marijuana what we were just talking about. there are no differences in marijuana usage for blacks and whites. the last three presidents admitted to smoking marijuana but one did not inhale. blacks are four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana usage than whites. we need to work together to correct this. wewe live in a nation that is has an interwoven destiny. >> i have tolls that i mourn for -- i have to say that i mourn for those families and their losses. i do think the police has to do a better job in reaching out to
the communities where they are not doing that. but i'm worried about the military way our police department are going. i am opposed to the broken windows even though it's a small miss key -- misdemeanor it leads to a disrespect to the law, i think it's wrong to go with tanks and things like that. >> we have to tighten this up a little bit. if you will cooperate with us. for mr. bell. >> i want to continue on education if you don't mind, new jersey is one of the worse states when it comes to achievement gap we're talking about minorities. 75% of black and latino students
in new jersey are not proficient when it comes to math or reading. is there anything anything you plan to do to help the minorities to close the gap. >> we have to get education back to the state and local level. washington got into this national defense of education act in 1957 when we enacted that the first federal intervention in education to stop the missile gap. it had nothing to do with that. washington needed the excuse in the entire period we've had federal involvement in education standards have declined all over the county. now, there's a common correspond core program that's going -- common correspond -- common core program that puts everybody into cookie cutter it doesn't let teachers teesm -- teach and dumbs down the program.
we need to decentralize spending we need to get the federal government i would abolish the department of education, 60 years of a failed experiment is enough. this county developed the first viewn -- universal education by means of popular control and control at the state or local level. we need to get back to that vision. >> i want to respond to that. this is my opponent who wants to take us backwards. i'm looking 0 to go forward. he doesn't think we should have a department. education. things like the epa and other things. he wants to unwind investments in our kids, i'm going to washington not to destroy government but to solve the problems people say we have in our communities investing in
universal preschool because every kid. >> sir -- >> i haven't interrupted you this is your example of civility in washington it's not going to work. if i can finish my 60 seconds. >> quickly. we need to have a person down in washington that's going to fight for our kids and invest in things affordable college. one of the biggest est things i hear is the and he knows of college indication. from preschool to college this is something i'm going to washington not is to destroy the department. education but to invest in things that matter. >> we're nearing the end of the debate. keep the responses to 30 seconds. the next question is for mr. booker. >> senator you were the mayor of newark not tongue -- too long ago, federal authorities are
investigating the watershed for illegal payments. you said you tried to eliminate the agency and rein it in. during this time you did not attend any board meetings i'm worked if you were feeling it was out of hand. >> we tried to get rid of it in other ways and kept failing we knew it was out of the control and had problems. the mall feesance you're you're talking about we discovered before the public or papers were writing about it, we turned it over to the authorities. i will continue to work aggressively whether as i did whistles mayor or united states senator to root out the problems and try to solve them like i did. >> how long did you know about the scandal before you disclosed it to the public?
>> may answer that question? i new about it moments soon as we discovered it we turned it over. >> moments. okay. >> our next question comes for mr. bell. >> we talked gun laws you talked support for the second amendment. background checks or tighten gun laws, if these bills cannot pass and you oppose them what other steps can be taken to address gun violence? >> i think it should be addressed by increased penalties for those who use firearms in the commission of a crime. always for the gun show amendment that was defeated. a big reason it was defeated a lot of veterans would be deterret from seeing psychologists having received psychologic care was under some
interpretations would have been made an inability to have weapons in the cause of self-defense. so these things having washington more involved more and more involved they have their hidden consequences and deterring people from seeking psychological help when they need it is a consequence. >> it's insult to our veterans and cop out on the question. 890% of the people in our state believe we should have comprehensive backgrounds checks to prevent people, illegal folks from getting their hands on weapons and prevent spousal abusers and people who are unstable. my opponent who lives in virginia the state that has the most weapons coming into our streets. we need to stop the flow of illegal weapons. we have to do that through comprehensive background checks
which new jerseyian support. >> mr. booker when your opponent ran against your opponent in 1978 they debated 21 times, this is the only debate you have agreed to. why so stingy? >> i'm happy that the viewers are tuning in you can run around the state north to south east to west doing town halls and community forums and meeting with business leaders and that's what we wanted to is go directly to the people. my opponent is playing catch up, he is running around the state pretending he knows the problems of the community. i'm going to have contact with the people until the last day. >> i hear a lot of specific confess toward senator booker, the way he responds he has meetings with sympathetic people and people he is trying to help, but you don't know whether he
favors a north jersey casino because he he had meeting in south jersey and listened to the concerns. apparently going to meetings with friendly audiences, he is celebrity and people like him people like him, i don't blame them. it's a institute for debating. it's diswushing. >> you have lived in virginia for the past 31 years and this past year you rented a home in new jersey. how can you convince voters that you understand their issues and you're going to fight for them. >> senator booker reminded them i was away for 30 years. it's not a gotcha point i start every speech to say i been way for 30 years, it's presumption outlines for me to say i could come back and represent new
jersey. i can't get anybody to take up the zero interest rate of the federal reserve and move to different policy. the fed is so powerful it's running our entire economy retargeted small business growth and not letting people have returns on their savings and i couldn't get anybody to do. >> i agree with him it is presumptionous for him to come back and run on a single vanity issue which is taking america back to the gold standard something that was debunked in the 1900s and gut jobs and hurt the middle class. >> a vanity issue is the about the stagnation of our economy our -- i have a solution to it, your solution is keep doing what they are doing under president obama. >> it's time for the candidates closing statements. the order was determine by a
random draw we begin with mr. bell. >> i want to thank the league of women voters and the moderate rairlts and reporters. i want to thank senator booker his willingness to debate even on this one time. i meant to thank the voters of new jersey, yes i did consider it somewhat presumptionous, but the voters of new jersey have shown they are open minded and willing to listen to an idea that is off the charts and make their own decisions about it not by taking a head count of economists that senator booker has given as his only argument against the gold standard or saying it's an old system listening to the meters and having a reasoned debate. it happened before when i ran on the tax tax cut even though i didn't beat bill bradley we worked together on the tax reform of 1986. i'm happy that i came back to
the straight of new jersey and i am incredibly grateful to the people of new jersey for hearing me out regardless of what happens on november 4. >> i want to thank the sponsor as well as moderators -- there's a clear choice before the voters in new jersey. we can go back to programs that are broken that haven't worked or go forward to growth and prosperity. my opponent wants to take us back on women rights restricting access to bitter control opposing things like equal work for equal pay. he wants to take the federal government out of supporting our local schools and making college more affordable. he wants to have the federal government stop investing in infrastructure like our roads crumbling and new jersey adequate being unable to meet the demands. and take us back to a 19th
century idea that is defuncted. i don't want to be a tea party person that goes down and opportunity work with folks. i meant to work with democrats and republicans together, all of us in new jersey one destiny to bring ourselves forward as a state. le i hope i get to be your senator for a full term. >> that concludes today debate. we want to thank you for watching. thank you to our panelists. i'm jim gardner for "action news." >> and i am wabc tv. thanks for watching. >> reporter: i'm tony as i amer amer -- sufficient immer by
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