Pat Toomey in 2010 PA Senate Debates


On Budget & Economy: We can't borrow and spend our way to prosperity

The two men traded jabs on economic issues. "We can't borrow and spend our way to prosperity, otherwise Greece would have the best economy in the world," said Toomey, founder of a small chain of family restaurants and a former Wall Street trader. He said Sestak did not understand how to create jobs, criticizing his rival's votes for the financial-industry bailout and rescues of General Motors and Chrysler, as well as the stimulus.

Sestak said he had to clean up the mess left behind by irresponsible spending and tax-cutting under President George W. Bush. "We'd been torpedoed and had to caulk the holes," he said.

The two actually agreed that the tone of their race had grown negative, but neither accepted blame for it. Both defended their ads as issues-based and accurate.

Source: Philadelphia Inquirer coverage of 2010 PA Senate debate Oct 23, 2010

On Homeland Security: Economic viability is most important national security issue

Sestak noted, "China holds so much of our reserves. If they dumped them on the stock market--imagine what would happen. Remember, it really is a strong economy that undergirds our military. That undergirds our education, that undergirds our health system," said Sestak.

His rival agreed with him on that one. "I agree with Joe that the most important national security issue long term is the economic viability of our country," Toomey said.

Source: Epoch Times coverage of 2010 PA Senate debate Oct 23, 2010

On Jobs: Taxes & spending have a chilling effect on creating jobs

In responding to the first question--the most pressing one faced by the nation--"How do you bring jobs back to Pennsylvania?", Sestak criticized the Bush administration's China policy and attacked his opponent for supporting it. "Corporations have gone overseas. My opponent, for example, voted that if a corporation shuts down its factory here in Pennsylvania; fires its employees; and then invests in a factory in China; and then cheap goods come in, often illegally subsidized by China; then no tax is given to the process of that large corporation, where jobs have gone overseas."

Toomey accused Sestak of supporting policies of bigger spending and higher taxes. He argued that such policies are have "a chilling effect on our ability to create jobs." Sestak attacked Toomey's pro-business stance. Pointing to the backdrop of the debate hall, Sestak said, "It says above us in Constitution Hall, 'We the People.' Not, 'We the Corporations'"

Source: Epoch Times coverage of 2010 PA Senate debate Oct 23, 2010

On Principles & Values: TV ad: Sestak served well in Navy; but not on Congress

The two actually agreed that the tone of their race had grown negative, but neither accepted blame for it. Both defended their ads as issues-based and accurate.

Sestak's ads have targeted Toomey as far to the right. One uses Toomey's own words, saying his record is "indistinguishable" from staunchly conservative former Sen. Rick Santorum's. Ads from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee rip Toomey for his support of free trade and votes for policies the group says have shipped American jobs to China.

The free-market advocacy group Club for Growth, which Toomey once led, bought $1 million worth of advertising time in the Philadelphia media market Thursday for a new ad attacking Sestak as "just another liberal" dancing to the tune of President Obama and the Democratic leadership. "Yes, Joe Sestak served honorably in the Navy," the new 30-second spot says. "His service in Congress is the problem."

Source: Philadelphia Inquirer coverage of 2010 PA Senate debate Oct 23, 2010

On Energy & Oil: We need oil from deep water wells despite the Gulf spill

In keeping with his general hostility toward big government, Toomey is skeptical of proposals to expand federal oversight of drilling in the Marcellus Shale fields. He opposes open-ended moratoriums on new ocean drilling, arguing that the nation needs the oil from deep water wells and that the Gulf spill, however disastrous and worthy of investigation, is an exception to a track record of generally safe operations by the industry.

Sestak has endorsed legislation that would bring Marcellus Shale drilling under the oversight of the Safe Drinking Water Act. He has echoed Pres. Obama's call for a strict moratorium on offshore drilling.

Those issues have provided ammunition for persistent sniping: "Toomey sides with Big Oil in the wake of BP disaster," Sestak charged in a press statements. "On energy, Sestak to the left of many Democrats," a Toomey statement contended.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette coverage of 2010 PA Senate Debates Jun 14, 2010

On Energy & Oil: Increase domestic supply instead of cap-and-trade

Toomey is a sharp critic of the cap-and-trade bill supported by his opponent, contending that it would have disastrous consequences for Pennsylvania businesses. Sestak championed the House version of cap-and-trade legislation designed to use market force to increase the costs of carbon emissions.

Toomey claims Sestak's voting record is more liberal than the views of his state on energy as on other issues. On cap and trade, for example, Toomey notes that four of Sestak's colleagues in the House Democratic delegation voted against the bill. All of those Democratic "no" votes came from districts carried by Sen. John McCain in the 2008 presidential race.

In Congress and later as president of the Club for Growth, Toomey argued that a major solution to the nation's energy problems was in increasing the supply of domestically produced oil, whether from the ocean floor or from such currently protected areas as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette coverage of 2010 PA Senate Debates Jun 14, 2010

On Energy & Oil: Global warming exists, but not necessarily due to humans

Unlike some conservative figures, Toomey acknowledges that global warming exists but he is an agnostic on the crucial question of whether it is a product of human activity. "There's no question that the Earth's surface temperature has increased," he said in a statement. "There is much debate in the scientific community as to the precise sources of global warming. There is no doubt that the proposed cap-and-trade 'solution' would do nothing to stop global warming but would be devastating to jobs and the economy in Pennsylvania."

Sestak said global warming is principally man-made, citing a series of scientific findings on the matter.

The opponents split this week on a closely watched Senate bill that would have stripped the EPA of the ability to regulate carbon dioxide emissions.

Sestak's campaign said he would have opposed the measure. Toomey supported the bill, calling the EPA's regulatory proposals a back-door effort to institute a cap-and-trade system, which is stalled in the Senate.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette coverage of 2010 PA Senate Debates Jun 14, 2010

On Budget & Economy: Real threat to economy is billions on bailouts

Sestak blamed Toomey, who was a member of Congress from 1998 through 2004, for supporting the Bush tax cuts and deregulation of banks and brokerages, which he argued helped lead to the economic meltdown.

Toomey said he admired Sestak's creative mind, but said his opponent did not understand the financial system. The real threat to the economy, he said, is in the billions of dollars spent on bailouts for banks and the auto industry, along with the economic stimulus and now a health-care regime that he said were all pushing the deficit to stratospheric levels. "Some people believe if you are productive and successful you should get soaked and get soaked hard. I just don't believe in that," Toomey said. He said productive companies and entrepreneurs create jobs. "We need to prevent this radical Democratic agenda, get spending under control, and cut taxes where we can, and we'll see the economy come roaring back," he said.

Source: Philadelphia Inquirer coverage of 2010 PA Senate Debates Apr 12, 2010

On Budget & Economy: Strengthen economy via lower taxes & less spending

Sestak and Toomey had agreed to debate on the economy, although only about half of the questions from the audience focused on that topic. "Well, it all relates to the economy," one audience member noted.

The two candidates found some common ground on questions geared toward the economy. Both said federal spending needs to be reduced.

"When I was (in Congress) I was fighting against the spending that was going on," said Toomey.

Sestak said he would like to see the government extend help to the group he says drives the economy--"The working family, not Wall Street"--by getting tax cuts to that group.

Sestak said he does not support the flat tax as he said Toomey does, and the government should look to guarantee community bank loans to entice borrowers.

Toomey said he believes in strengthening the economy through lower taxes, less spending and increasing domestic energy production.

Source: The Express-Times coverage of 2010 PA Senate debate Apr 11, 2010

On Health Care: Allow purchasing insurance across state lines

On health care, Sestak lauded the Democrats' recent reform package with specifics such as the ban on denying coverage to those with pre-existing conditions.

Toomey lashed back saying he would work to repeal health care reform and replace it with other measures such as the purchase of insurance across state lines.

Source: The Express-Times coverage of 2010 PA Senate debate Apr 11, 2010

The above quotations are from 2010 Pennsylvania Senate Debates.
Click here for other excerpts from 2010 Pennsylvania Senate Debates.
Click here for other excerpts by Pat Toomey.
Click here for a profile of Pat Toomey.
Pat Toomey on other issues:
Abortion
Budget/Economy
Civil Rights
Corporations
Crime
Drugs
Education
Energy/Oil
Environment
Families
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Immigration
Jobs
Principles
Social Security
Tax Reform
Technology
War/Peace
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Page last updated: Nov 01, 2010