Monday, August 21, 2006

NE Senate Race

While I haven't seen a transcipt, the LJS does have journalist Don Walton give a synopsis.

Both men apparently are against setting any deadlines on removing American troops from Iraq, and both oppose using Federal funds to research embryonic stem cells.

They differ on opening the Artic Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration, which I tend to support. Nelson says he supports further Gulf exploration, but I'm not sure why you would want to limit exploation to any one area. We need to develop the resources wherever they might be, in my opinion.

"Increased domestic oil and gas production is required to address energy needs, Ricketts said. Getting oil from the wildlife refuge is “not the silver bullet,” Nelson replied. It would take a dozen years to supply oil from the refuge if exploration were successful, he said. Instead, Nelson said, he voted for additional exploration in the Gulf of Mexico and supports developing alternative fuels, including ethanol. Ricketts said he too supports more exploration in coastal waters, along with alternative energy, but suggested a decision to drill in the Arctic now could prompt reduced gas prices."

Ricketts is apparently willing to look at a national sales tax as part of a comprehensive tax reform plan; Nelson has been running attack ads on this issue pretty consistently on TV, mischaracterizing Rickett 's position as "raising taxes on the poor and middle-class". Nelson also has criticizes Rickett's for wanting to eliminate federal farm subsidies, while Ricketts says he wants only to cap the payments for larger producers.

Nelson's best point is his immigration reform policy, which starts with border enforcement, while Ricketts attached himself to "the Hagel plan", although his comment makes it sound more like "the Pence plan" -- return home first, then apply for guest worker status.

I'd still love a transcript. Hard to say from this how I'd lean, but Ricketts is sounding a little better than I expected, softening the tone a bit. Nelson kept on the attack, and doesn't seem to have said too much on what he differs on Ricketts with, and what policies he would push for for the next term other than immigration.

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