Blumenthal said the government can do a better job providing financing and loans to businesses, as well as providing job training and targeted tax deductions for research and development, startup companies and firms that hire new workers. He also called for closing loopholes that allow U.S. companies to send jobs overseas.
McMahon, who used a clip from Blumenthal's response from an earlier debate about how to create a job, [in which Blumenthal stumbled over how government should be involved,] as a political ad, chided her opponent for improving his answer during this latest debate. "I'm very happy you have a notion on how to create jobs," McMahon said.
Outside the debate, hundreds of supporters for both candidates tried to shout down one another. Blumenthal supporters, many representing local labor unions, brought a huge inflatable "fat cat" with the name tag Linda McMahon around its neck. The cat held an inflatable worker, which hoisted a sign that read: "Don't cut my minimum wage," a reference to McMahon's recent comments about how future minimum wage increases should be closely scrutinized to make sure small businesses are not being harmed.
Blumenthal criticized WWE accepting $10 million in state tax credits and later laying off 10% of its work force in 2009.
It didn't work. This will be remembered as another fight over WWE and McMahon's defense of her company's questionable behavior. "I have fought to protect children from abuse and neglect,'' Blumenthal said. "My opponent has marketed sex and violence to children. There have been seven dead wrestlers since she started this campaign.''
To this, McMahon replied that the "consequence of death is a ver sad thing... those consequences were not the result of ring performance."
McMahon concluded, "You can always change the channel. It's insulting to the millions of people who watch WWE each week to suggest that it is less than quality entertainment."
After the debate, a McMahon campaign spokesman challenged Blumenthal's assertion that McMahon had improperly tipped off a doctor about the steroids probe, saying, "WWE did not want to be associated with the doctor, and as is typically the case when a company wants to break any association with someone or dismiss someone, WWE provided cause. The doctor was not 'tipped off" to anything. And that memo that Dick Blumenthal invoked was entered into evidence at trial by prosecutors who made the exact same argument Blumenthal did. Twelve jurors unanimously rejected that argument, and WWE was totally exonerated without so much as calling a single witness."
Blumenthal said he supported cap-and-trade in concept, but he rejected labeling it an energy tax. He called cap-and-trade legislation dead and said tax incentives should be directed toward fuel-cell and other clean-energy technologies.
"She talks about creating jobs," Blumenthal said. "Many of the jobs she's created at WWE have no health insurance, the wrestlers and others are hired as independent contractors." Blumenthal said the WWE is under investigation by the state for allegedly classifying wrestlers as independent contractors, denying health insurance benefits and dodging taxes. "Creating those kinds of jobs, without health insurance is certainly not something that I would brag about," he said.
McMahon said Blumenthal would allow many of the Bush-era tax breaks to end with this year's calendar, to which Blumenthal replied that the nation's wealthiest don't need them and that he would focus on helping small businesses.
McMahon said that the current economy is fragile. "I certainly want to say to everyone here that I believe that now in time of recession we should not raise taxes on anyone, certainly not on the middle class," she said.
McMahon, in rebuttal, reiterated her position on tax cuts: "We should not raise taxes on anyone, certainly not on the middle class," she said. She painted Blumenthal as a career politician who, as a state legislator, voted for a record tax increase. "I don't think we can send Mr. Blumenthal to Washington with his tax-and-spend philosophy," McMahon said.
BLUMENTHAL: I believe that a two-state solution is necessary. However, before this objective can be met it is essential that Palestinian leaders stop aiding terrorism. In addition, they must recognize Israel's right to exist as an autonomous nation with Jerusalem as its capital.
McMAHON: I support a sustainable two-state solution to the conflict. This is both essential to the survival & security of Israel as a democracy & a fundamenta American interest. Palestinians must guarantee Israel's security by stating any resolution is truly the end to all violence and that Israel should be recognized as the state of Jewish people. It is not the duty of the US government to dictate the terms o any negotiations. Consequently, I disagree with Pres. Obama calling for a settlement freeze. This decision only emboldened the Palestinians not to negotiate for peace and talks cannot begin if the terrorist organization Hamas remains influential.
McMAHON: Both. The terrorists only need to succeed once, while we must get it right every single time.
BLUMENTHAL: While I am thankful that there has not been a successful attack on American shores since 9/11/2001, real threats remain. It is therefore vital that we use both military and non-military methods to target and attack the terrorists where they are. This includes targeting Al Qaeda's organizations in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen as well as its affiliates like Al-Shabaab in Somalia. At the same time, we must do more at home to remedy the unacceptable flaws exposed in our homeland security, by improving information sharing, bringing together the best technology and the most effective management strategies to get people working across agencies, and to engage the private sector to collect, understand, and mobilize information in real time to improve our national security.
BLUMENTHAL: We need to establish a comprehensive, federal solution to our ongoing immigration problem. We must secure our borders, and crack down on employers flouting the law by hiring undocumented immigrants. Piecemeal approaches to fixing this problem by various states are not the answer--Washington must fulfill its responsibility by enacting a comprehensive solution.
McMAHON: I oppose amnesty. I support legal immigration and I believe much of this country's strength and prosperity has come as a result of the immense contributions immigrants have made. We have historically welcomed the best workers and the best minds from every country, and I believe we should continue to do so provided it is done legally. We are a nation built on the rule of law, and immigration laws--like all laws--must be enforced.
BLUMENTHAL: I support extending tax cuts for the middle class. My opponent would vote against tax cuts for the middle class unless and until the wealthiest 2% get tax cuts too. I think that is wrong.
McMAHON: I would make the current tax law permanent. Allowing the tax law to change as proposed would negatively affect our most successful small businesses and our seniors. It is estimated that $1.8 billion will leave the state and be in the hands of Washington politicians if the proposed tax increases go into effect. Only four states in the union will be hit harder than Connecticut. The tax hikes would significantly affect the economy in Connecticut, most notably in the number of jobs and change in personal income. From 2011 to 2020, the state of Connecticut would:
BLUMENTHAL: I support strengthening the current structure of sanctions on Iran, until it relinquishes its aspirations for nuclear weapons.
McMAHON: The first, and most important, thing we must do is prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. The CIA has already declared that Iran is capable of producing nuclear weapons within the next few years. While I support building strong international support for sanctions, we cannot wait for the United Nations to enact further restrictions that Iran will simply ignore. I do support the enactment of the recent sanctions by the US and the European Union on Iran. However, with that in mind, I believe the US cannot allow those who would oppose or maliciously delay sanctions dictate the content or the timing of our efforts. The US should continue to exert pressure and press for hard sanctions against Iran until the threat is neutralized. All options in dealing with Iran must remain on the table.
The above quotations are from 2010 Connecticut Senate Debates.
Click here for other excerpts from 2010 Connecticut Senate Debates.
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Linda McMahon on other issues:
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