Iowa Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate try to set themselves apart in debate

Candidates for the Democratic Party's nomination for an Iowa U.S. Senate seat.
Candidates for the Democratic Party's nomination for an Iowa U.S. Senate seat.
Published: May. 7, 2022 at 11:14 PM CDT
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DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) - Candidates Abby Finkenauer, Michael Franken, and Glenn Hurst took the stage Saturday night for the first debate before the primary on June 7.

The moderators of the hour-long debate asked questions covering a long list of topics, including the potential change to abortion protections, sending troops to Ukraine, how they would handle inflation, the biggest threats to Iowa, the role of government in the classroom, infrastructure, and agriculture and biofuels

There were many topics where the three candidates gave similar answers. All three said they would support codifying the legal protection given to abortion by Roe v. Wade with a law. All of them supported paid parental leave. All of them argued for their ability to beat Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley in the general election.

When asked to give President Biden a letter grade to rate his performance, Franken and Finkenauer gave B’s; Hurst, a B+.

One topic where there was a significant difference of opinion was on sending American troops to aid Ukraine. Finkenauer and Hurst said there was no point at which to do so. Franken said yes, if Vladimir Putin used a nuclear weapon.

“You have to have a red line in life,” Franken said.

Throughout the evening, Hurst emphasized what he said were his progressive stances in comparison to his Democratic opponents. He advocated for Medicare for All and the Green New Deal.

Finkenauer was the candidate who focused the most on Grassley, claiming he has forgotten the people who he represents.

Watch the entire debate, hosted by KCRG-TV9 along with KCCI, KWQC, and KTIV, below:

Democratic Primary Debate for U.S. Senate

WATCH: KCRG-TV9, along with KCCI, KWQC, and KTIV, host a forum with Democratic Party candidates for that party's nomination for a U.S. Senate election in 2022. That seat is currently held by Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley.

Posted by KCRG-TV9 on Friday, May 6, 2022

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