Anne Barth made her supporters proud at the debate tonight with Bush Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito.
For those of us who’ve seen Capito in debates before, it was the usual say one thing here, do something else in Washington D.C.
WEPM broadcast the debate and there will probably be a link later.
WEPM has a story up about the debate with a line in need of clarification:
More than 250 people were in attendance when the candidates for West Virginia’s Second Congressional District faced off last night at Musselman High School in the final of the WEPM and Journal candidate forums for 2008. Incumbent Congresswoman Shelly Moore Capito (R) and challenger Anne Barth (D) sat down to answer questions from the panel and from the audience. The debate was moderated by Blue Ridge Community and Technical College President Peter Checkovich. Crowds lined the streets with signs supporting their candidates prior to the debate and supporters cheered and yelled during the debate itself, a sign of the excitement that has been created as this heated campaign nears a finish.
There were more than 30 people outside of Musselman High School lining the road for Anne Barth.
Six supporters of Capito waved signs about a half mile away at Centra Bank.
It was very telling that Barth’s supporters were at the debate and Capito’s were at a bank where executives have helped fund her campaign.
The ohter tellng thing was before the debate. Before the debate, Anne Barth walked through the auditorium, greeting people, whether wearing her buttons or Capito’s stickers and thanking them for attending while Shelley Moore Capito was huddled with her staff behind the stage hiding from her constituents.
For those of us disappointed by the lack of representation from Capito and why we want to replace her with Anne Barth, the symbolism between the two could not be more apparent.
Capito even mentioned how she meets with people of the district in town halls and then corrected herself and referred to her notorious town hall teleconferences where only pre-selected people are invited to join and where questions are screened as opposed to meeting with all of her constituents.
Capito also claimed she was in the Eastern Panhandle so often that we were probably sick of seeing her. She’s only half right there and it wasn’t the seeing her part. Unless you belong to the country club in Charleston, you probably don’t see Capito.
Capito claimed an ad by the DCCC (not Anne Barth as the WEPM questioner mistakenly said) was a negative attack for pointing out she took campaign contributions from Big Oil. “The insinuation is my vote is for sale,” Capito said. Tom Delay, Mark Foley, Jack Abramoff, and Ted Stevens could argue that Capito should remove the first three words from the preceeding sentence.
Barth, meanwhile, pointed out that the ad is truthful as to Capito’s contributors from Big Oil and that she’s criticized Capito’s votes and not Capito herself, unlike Capito who falsely claims Anne Barth hasn’t paid her taxes. While Anne Barth has focused on the issues and Capito’s voting record, Capito resorts to personal attacks.
“This is the kind of personal attacks people are tired of,” Anne Barth said.
On the Iraq war, Capito also told the same lie she told in 2006.
“I’d like to get out of Iraq, like everyone else, as soon as possible,” Capito claimed, leaving out that every time it has come to a vote, she voted against resolutions to withdraw from Iraq. “I think we need to withdraw. I think we are withdrawing.”
Capito’s in Congress, has voted against withdrawal, and yet she’s uncertain if troops are withdrawing or not from Iraq? She also said timelines “hand our enemy a roadmap to victory” yet now the administration has agreed to a withdrawal timelines she’s for withdrawal? Under her twisted logic, does that now mean that Capito now believess in handing “our enemy a roadmap to victory”? Consistency isn’t something Capito practices because as we’ve seen too often, she says one thing in the district and does another thing in Washington.
Anne Barth had a terrific answer on Iraq, saying that we never should have gone into Iraq that had nothing to do with Sept. 11th and instead should have finished the job in Afghanistan in getting Osama bin Laden.
On taxes, Capito defended her support for tax cuts for the wealthy, saying that the middleclass benefited when the largest cuts went to the rich since they create the jobs. She even conflated the average tax cut, ignoring much of the tax cuts went to the wealthiest 2 percent while the rest of us didn’t see anywhere close to the $2,200 tax cut she claimed. The middleclass didn’t come anywhere close to that. Meanwhile, Anne Barth said it was time for the middleclass to get the larger portion of a tax cut.
After the debate, Capito’s staffers surrounded her to screen her from constituents from coming up to talk to her. Meanwhile Anne Barth worked through the crowd, even taking a question from a man covered in Capito stickers, who asked her about abortion. Anne Barth said she was pro-choice just like Capito. The man was taken aback. “I didn’t know Capito was pro-choice,” he said.
Telling. Voters who don’t know Capito’s record support her. Informed voters love Anne Barth.