February 28, 2022/Media, Press

ICYMI: “Fireworks” At First GOP #NCSEN Debate As Candidates “Take Aim” At Budd

The first GOP U.S. Senate primary debate played out exactly as one would expect, full of “fireworks,” attacks, and even more infighting as the candidates “took turns criticizing Budd, who was in Orlando, Florida, at the Conservative Political Action Conference.”

When they weren’t attacking each other, they were busy trying to please the most extreme sides of the Republican Party, coming out against U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Jackson even before her hearing, opposing a minimum wage increase, calling the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law a “sham,” and praising NRSC Chair Rick Scott for putting forth a GOP agenda that would raise taxes on retired North Carolinians .

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Spectrum News: 3 GOP Senate candidates at N.C. debate take aim at Ted Budd, who skipped event — “The candidates debated public policy and took turns criticizing Budd, who was in Orlando, Florida, at the Conservative Political Action Conference…After answering one question, Eastman waved to her right and asked, “Should we give a minute to the empty podium?”

WRAL: 7 takeaways from NC GOP’s first U.S. Senate primary debate — “The most heated exchange of the debate came when McCrory took aim at Eastman over her lack of time spent in North Carolina or as a member of the Republican Party…Eastman clapped back, ‘Real quick, Governor, you can refer to me as Ms. Eastman. Next, did you serve in the military? No. So let me help you out. The military tells you where to live. Twenty years ago, I was assigned here at Fort Bragg, and that’s actually where I met my husband. The military moved us all around since and we knew this would be our forever home.’ In a statement after the event, she said she did not appreciate ‘cheap shots from a failed politician who has never seen the battlefield.’”

ABC11: Key differences emerge during first debate among NC Republicans vying for GOP Senate nomination

News & Observer: NC Republicans seek to differentiate themselves in first US Senate debate — “Over the course of a little more than an hour, former N.C. Gov. Pat McCrory, former U.S. Rep. Mark Walker and Marjorie K. Eastman, a combat veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, took turns going after Democratic President Joe Biden, their opponent U.S. Rep. Ted Budd and each other, as they made their cases for why Republicans should vote for them in the upcoming primary. Walker said if elected, and if Republicans retake control of the U.S. Senate, that he might not back Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to continue leading Senate Republicans. ‘I applaud Sen. Rick Scott,” he said. ‘In fact, I think he needs to be the majority leader instead of Mitch McConnell, moving forward.’ Walker also criticized McCrory for recently saying he supported McConnell.”

Carolina Journal: Senate primary debate offers fireworks despite Ted Budd’s absence — “Things got somewhat heavier, too, including an exchange by the former governor and Eastman after McCrory tried to offer her a lesson in N.C. politics and welcome her to the Republican Party. She called McCrory’s comments ‘insulting’…Walker feigned ducking for cover behind the podium.”