Posted: Sep 26, 2012 4:32 AM by Dennis Bragg - MTN News
Updated: Sep 26, 2012 4:32 AM
MISSOULA- Spurring the economy and cutting government spending dominated debate Tuesday night as candidates for Montana's lone seat in the House met in Missoula.
Republican Steve Daines of Bozeman, Democrat Kim Gillan of Billings and Libertarian Dave Kaiser of Victor gathered in Montana PBS' Missoula studios.
Campaign staff members, along with a handful of students and local political followers, gathered next door to watch the 90-minute debate, broadcast statewide.
The economy, and cutting spending and regulation highlighted the question and answer session. All three had ideas to create jobs in Montana, ranging from better worker re-training programs to cutting red tape.
Democratic Gillan said, "Let's ... focus on the companies, the individuals in the United States who are going to use our talent and make sure they're going to create jobs for the future. I think the strategy we need to do is to work with Republicans and Democrats instead of starting from the extremes and find a way we can get the economy back on track."
Libertarian Kaiser said he wants to cut all waste and "duplicate services" out of federal government. "We'll save an enormous amount of money. The also with regulations that are dated back to the 40s, 50s, 60s. We can eliminate them and let businesses do what they do best and not be impeded by the federal government."
Republican candidate Daines said he wants to attack the $16 trillion U.S. debt. "It creates tremendous uncertainity. We have countries like China that we owe $1.1 trillion to. And so it's going to take some broad, comprehensive bi-partisan support to get that done."
Gillan took Daines to task for supporting Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan's budget reforms.
But Daines said without changes to programs like Social Security the entire system could fail. Kaiser continued to say reducing the size of government is key to economic recovery.