BOSTON (CBS) – The two Democrats running for U.S. Senate met in their last Eastern Mass. debate Monday night at the WBZ studios.
There’s only a week to go until primary day, and with Rep. Stephen Lynch trailing Rep. Ed Markey in the polls and the money race, his campaign felt he had to go on the attack early and often. And that is precisely what he did.
“You voted repeatedly no on funding for Homeland Security,” Lynch said to Markey.
Lynch went right after Markey for votes he claimed could have undermined the response to last week’s marathon bombings.
VIDEO: Democratic Debate
“On creating the joint terrorism task force, that is the group that enabled our response, if Special Agent DeLauriers (FBI), if Commissioner Ed Davis (BPD), if Colonel Alben (MA State Police), if all those federal state and local couldn’t work together, we would not have had the effective response that we had,” said Lynch.
“I was the principal person that was pushing the administration in terms of the Joint Terrorism Task force, ensuring that there was complete cooperation among all of the agencies,” said Markey. “I was in support of doing that.”
Markey cast himself as the more effective legislator, citing his work on cable and phone deregulation, reforms Lynch claimed haven’t given consumers what they want.
“The poor people in Western Mass., they’re watching the Yankees tonight, those people have suffered enough,” said Lynch.
“Steve is putting so many red herrings out here we’re gonna have to put an aquarium right here in the middle of the studio,” Markey responded.
Lynch even went after Markey’s image as a champion of abortion rights.
“Ed you sponsored an amendment to overturn Roe v Wade in the U.S. Congress,” said Lynch.
“I have voted consistently pro choice for 30 years in the congress, 30 years Steve, and that’s why Planned Parenthood and NARAL have endorsed me,” said Markey.
Lynch had Markey on the defensive early and often, but going on the attack like that carries risks in a race where a huge majority of voters say they’re undecided. If they tuned in looking for answers, will they be inspired by Lynch’s fiery performance? or turned off? Answers are coming on April 30 when voters head to the poll for the primary.