Local Politics

Democrats debate to meet Burr in Senate race

Posted June 10, 2010
Updated June 17, 2010

— The two candidates seeking the Democratic nomination in the U.S. Senate runoff in North Carolina tackled issues including the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and job loss during a debate at the WRAL studios in Raleigh on Thursday.

Lexington attorney Cal Cunningham stressed holding BP to a high standard and lifting the cap on penalties for incidents like the oil spill.

Marshall and his opponent, Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, said they would not support drilling off the coast of North Carolina.

Replay: Democratic Senate candidates debate

Marshall said she also wanted short-term answers for the unemployed, including extending unemployment benefits.

"We need to make sure the federal government steps in and stops the job losses," she said.

Both candidates spoke out against the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy for gays in the military.

They also agreed on immigration issues. "We can't deport out way out of it," Cunningham said.

It was the first one-on-one debate between the two since they advanced to the runoff following the May 4 primary. Marshall finished first and Cunningham second.

The candidates differed on two issues.

Cunningham attacked Marshall saying she would raise the Social Security retirement age. She disputed his statements saying "I do not support raising it."

Marshall retaliated claiming Cunningham has accepted more than $100,000 from Washington insiders.

Cunningham denied her claims, stressing his independence. "I am going to take the same sense of independence to Washington," he said.

Early voting has begun for the June 22 runoff. The winner takes on Republican incumbent Richard Burr in November.

The following stations will offer the debate at a later date and time:

  • WSOC will air it Sunday at 12:30 p.m.
  • WRAZ will air it Sunday at 3:30 p.m.

This story is closed for comments.

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  • 6079 SMITH W Jun 11, 2010

    I wouldn't start celebrating just yet....corruption, deal making, no leadership, no experience, liberal deregulation of the financial industry, and gross incompetence in general. NONE of these things stopped George and Dick from being re-elected...so maybe the new guy will win a second term too. ;)

  • whatusay Jun 11, 2010

    Both of these dems are wasting their time and money. No way a democrat can defeat Burr this election. Too much corruption, deal making, no jobs, no leadership, and complete incompetence and lack of experience in the present Obama administration for democrats to be elected.

  • justuptonogood Jun 11, 2010

    They're both identical. Just flip a coin for which one to vote for. Either will be a rubber stamp for Obama.

  • redapace Jun 11, 2010

    If this week's primaries are any indication of how things will go in November the incumbents are safe. What was it....82 out of 84 incumbents won their races?

  • nanasix Jun 11, 2010

    Elaine Marshall, SOS has no more business in a Senate seat than a 5yr old. She has cost our state millions of dollars in lost revenue with her neglect & malfeasance of duty since taking office 13 yrs ago. I have researched her state records, and what I found is unbelievable. To think that she can't run a state office and wants a senate seat is beyond believe. This woman has no right representing our state or country in anything. I've asked the state auditor's office for a full audit, but have gotten no response. A full audit would disclose she has cost us many millions of dollars we can never recover, not to mention the liability she has put on our state in allowing corp's to function when going years without filing annual reports as required by law. AM2PAT is a prime example, they didn't file for four (4) yrs, and she did nothing. After things got hot on them they filed on their own. Two officers have been convicted in connection with the tainted pre-filled syringes, and the owner is

  • mep Jun 11, 2010

    Lets see, neither supports offshore drilling for oil so we can continue to support other countries economies. Marshall said, "We need to make sure the federal government steps in and stops the job losses,". Well this administration has spent nearly a TRILLION dollars it had to borrow to help stop job losses, and has FAILED! (if you dont count saving and adding govt jobs) Continuing to borrow and extend unemployment benefits is NOT the answer! DADT response is not a surprise, guess neither of them have served in the military. As for immigration, WHY can't we deport at least most of our way out of this mess? But then again, the Dems are going to need many of the 11 MILLION illegals to win the 2012 election. Oh, and yes Social Security is going BANKRUPT, and no one since Bush has had the courage to face that fact. Bet it becomes more of an issue when the taxes for our 13 TRILLION dollar debt kicks in, and yet no one can get their full SS check.

  • ObamaMustGo aka NCcarguy Jun 11, 2010

    plenty coups....and those tax cuts allowed people to spend money on thier own, and NOT the government deciding who the winners and losers are.

    It's not just taxes they get us with...it's FEES too. Everything they do that has a fee associated with it has gone up dramatically. My professional license went from $50/year to $200/year. That's a dramatic increase.

  • rand321 Jun 11, 2010

    after watching the debates, I came to realize that something about Cal gave me the creeps. His mannerisms, his messages, highly scripted and populists polished; and delivery and even look is so similar to the the last male democratic senator for NC, Mr. John Edwards.

    they could almost be brothers!

    We do not need another slick lawyer, with heavily scripted messasing to represent NC. Marshall has the tried and true NC pragmatic, to be, rather than to seem quality.

    Cunningham, like Edwards, seems to be more than they are and more show than substance.

  • tommys5 Jun 11, 2010

    The following programs and agencies are currently participating in the agency voter registration program:

    •Work First
    •Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
    •Food Stamps
    •Services for the Blind
    •Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services
    •Vocational Rehabilitation •North Carolina Protection and Advocacy Agency •Employment Security Commission

    The start of serfdom,keep electing these clowns.

  • Plenty Coups Jun 11, 2010

    "How much more in taxs can the few that are working pay for those that wont or cant work?"

    The ironic thing with this comment is that Bush's tax cuts caused a large percentage of those paying taxes not have to pay anything anymore. Quit whining about taxes, they're the lowest they've been in years. Go to the Tax Foundations website if you don't believe me.