As the Durango Herald’s Joe Hanel reports:
Rep. Scott Tipton and Sal Pace sparred over differences of style and substance in the first debate of their congressional campaign Wednesday night…
Tipton said House Republicans have been the only ones to vote for deficit reduction through their budgets, drafted by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. Democrats savaged them for that budget because it would convert Medicare into a voucher program for private insurance.
“Unfortunately, in Washington, when you put an idea on the table, you get demonized,” Tipton said.
Pace said the demonization was deserved.
“I’m sorry that you felt that way, but a lot of people felt scared about the Ryan budget,” he said. [Pols emphasis]
In turn, Tipton criticized Pace’s record in the state Legislature. Pace voted for bills that raised car registration fees and suspended some business tax breaks.
By most accounts we’ve heard, it was a Sal Pace-friendly crowd last night at the Adams State University Theater in Alamosa (see photo above). Hanel’s report concurs:
The crowd of around 100 included supporters of both candidates, although Pace elicited some of the loudest applause on a few occasions when he took direct aim at Tipton. He knocked Tipton for Congress going home for the month of August without passing a farm bill, which includes drought relief and money to clear out beetle-killed trees.
“If I were your congressman, I would have not voted to come home on recess for five weeks until we passed the farm bill,” Pace said.
Tipton said Congress is not on recess. However, it is not meeting in Washington for the rest of the month…
That last line from Tipton is a bit more embarrassing than meets the eye, folks. It appears that the House indeed voted to formally adjourn on August 7th:
The House and Senate formally adjourned until Sept. 10 on Tuesday morning eliminating the need for pro forma sessions over the August break.
The House voted to adjourn, reversing itself after all Democrats and 78 Republicans voted last week to defeat the Senate’s adjournment resolution, during a pro forma session.
So Tipton is not being truthful about this. Tipton did vote–with Democrats–not to adjourn last week, but as of Tuesday the House is adjourned until September. Not that this was anything other than a pro forma excuse for Tipton anyway, but in this case even the excuse was wrong. And the most charitable explanation is that Tipton wasn’t paying attention either way.
Hopefully, along with never promising “no cuts, no privatization” to Medicare again, Tipton will stop using this “we’re not in recess” line for the rest of the August recess.