Feingold attacked what he called Johnson's lack of specific plans and his avoiding the questions. Johnson noted that over Feingold's 18-year Senate career, however, the deficit has gone from $4 trillion to $14 trillion, referencing his most recent television ad.
"Everybody know that when Bill Clinton was president we worked together, we completely balanced the budget. I took very tough votes," Feingold shot back. "And then I stood up to the deficit spending of the Bush administration. Your ad is absolutely dishonest, Ron."
In his closing statement, Johnson said he could bring a fresh, business world discipline to Washington to fix the deficit. Feingold emphasized his experience and reputation for fiscal responsibility.
Feingold said he supported a fully integrated military, while Johnson said the military needs more information on the effects of removing the policy before overturning it.
"That's what the American people, that's what Wisconsin voters dislike, when one federal judge replaces democracy," Johnson said. "I think we should get the input from the people who actually serve."
Feingold said he himself offered specifics, for example a 41-point plan to help control federal spending. Johnson said the plan would cut $25 billion per year at a time when the deficit is $1,400 billion.
Feingold shot back that at least he's providing a plan, whereas his opponent hadn't done that.
Later Johnson referred to a larger cost-cutting plan that Feingold put forth when he first entered office, and said the federal debt increased $10 trillion since that time. "Your plans didn't work, Sen. Feingold," Johnson said.
"We didn't need a 2,600-page bill passed in the middle of the night to address the problems that do exist in our health care industry," Johnson fired back, arguing in favor of repealing a bill that he said amounts to a government takeover and will cost the average family $2,100.
The above quotations are from 2010 Wisconsin Senate Debates.
Click here for other excerpts from 2010 Wisconsin Senate Debates.
Click here for other excerpts by Russell Feingold.
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Russell Feingold on other issues:
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