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tv   Campaign 2022 New Jersey 7th Congressional District Debate  CSPAN  November 7, 2022 3:54am-5:02am EST

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>> welcome, everybody to the new jersey globe today. between candidates for congress in new jersey's seventh district, the democratic incumbent, tom malinowski, and republican challenger, tom keene, junior. i'm david while steam, editor of the new jersey globe. thank you for participating in this important exchange of ideas that permit voters a chance to compare your views and decide who they want to represent him in congress for the next two years. every candidate will have 90 seconds to make an opening
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statement. after that, i will ask a series of questions related to national issues and the campaign for congress in the seventh district. for better or for worse, every question in this debate has been prepared by me. i've not shared this with anybody. we have a lot of ground to cover . respectfully i asked the candidates stick to their allotted time. if a candidate goes too long, i will hold my hand up. if that doesn't work, i will interrupt. the questions will alternate between the two candidates at my discretion. each candidate will have one minute to answer and i reserve the right to ask a follow-up before moving on. as i always say in these forms, my job is to be the moderator. not to take sides, not to share my opinion, i'm going to do exactly that. i'm going to moderate the debate, try and keep it moving forward. but i will look to each of you
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to make sure that your opponent speaks in a fact-based way. and i know you both well. if a candidate is attacked during his response, the opponent will receive an additional 30 seconds to respond. each candidate will have a chance to ask their opponent one question. candidates will have 30 seconds to ask the question, the opponent will have 60 seconds to respond. the candidate will have another 30. candidates will have a 90 second response for a closing statement. we conducted a coin toss before the start of the debate. senator kean won the coin toss, offering to give the second closing statement. so congressman malinowski, we will go to you to give your opening statement. >> thank you, david, nice to see
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you again. it hasn't been easy, we are certainly not where we need to be, but four years later, i think i can say that i have delivered a bipartisan infrastructure bill that should bring manufacturing jobs back to the united states. gun violence prevention. finally allowing medicare to negotiate drug prices for our seniors. a climate change bill that speeds our transition to true energy independence. we have to work just as hard right now to contain inflation, restored to american women and families the rights that they are losing, and to fight with the terrible divisiveness and extremism threatening to tear our country apart. to do those things, we need a particular type of representation in washington. we need intelligence, calm,
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steady, rational leadership. we need moderation, not maga. we need problem solvers, not a performance artist. we will stand up to extremism, and a matter which side it is coming from. as you look at us today, as you listen to us, i hope you ask yourself which one of us is ready to do that for another two years. which one of us is giving you straight answers to questions, telling you exactly what we believe is right and wrong, which has the strength and fortitude to stand up to extremism. i hope it is a great debate. i look forward to a healthy exchange of opinions. and david, i forgive you that you are doing this in the middle of a yankee game. sen. kean: thank you, good to see you again. i believe deeply in public service. i have seen throughout my entire life one person can make a difference in another persons life. whether as a volunteer firefighter or senate republican
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leader in the legislature. in the legislature, i was able to -- billions of dollars in new taxes and spending that would have been boy stood on the hard-working citizens of new orleans. make sure we have new and generational jobs so that people could grow into the future and their families in the garden state. but now, the issues impacting people are national in scope the highest rate of inflation in 40 years. and following nancy pelosi's lead over those of his constituents and caring about her concerns as opposed to the bipartisan congress who warned him if he continued to vote this way, the high inflation rate, the massive increase in prices would happen. he put her priorities over your priorities. i will go down to washington,
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d.c., i will break the back of inflation by controlling spending responsibly. i will make us energy independent once again. i will secure the southern border, i will lower the overall tax rate and create new jobs and new economies for americans. i've served in the minority, i've served in the majority, i've served in a split chamber. i've always found a way to find common ground and find the solution on behalf of the constituents i've served. i want to thank you all for joining us tonight. i ask for your vote. >> thank you. congressman, i will ask you the first question. the house ethics committee is currently reviewing allegations you failed to properly disclose stocks you purchased or sold in 2019 and 2020, or failed to properly file those personal transaction reports for your stock transactions. the office of congressional
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ethics says you may have violated house rules in doing so. what happened here, what were you thinking in doing that? rep. malinowski: so the office of congressional ethics well over a year ago published a report which said that i had been late in filing reports about monthly transactions, which i acknowledged and collected. they also confirmed i had no involvement or even prior knowledge of transactions or trades that my broker was making on my behalf and on behalf of hundreds of other clients. so they established well over a year ago there was no ethical violation, no conflict of interest. since then, i have gone above and beyond what the law requires that only 10 members of the house and senate has put my entire life savings in a fully blind trust. so i don't know what my
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investments are. there is a difference between us. mr. kean is also actively trading in the stock market to this day. he also takes campaign contributions from the companies he invests in. for example, a major investment in pharmaceutical stocks. he takes campaign contributions from pharma, and opposed allowing lower drug prices. a major investor in oil and gas stocks, had campaign contributions in the last couple of months from philip 66, which runs the refinery in linden, and opposed every effort to hold oil companies accountable. so if you are looking for conflict of interest, look at the other guy. >> senator, i will give you a chance to respond. sen. kean: this is about ethics. my opponent violated the law.
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to stop members of congress from insider trading 145 times. think about that. and despite of what he says tonight, he's still under a bipartisan ethics committee review. five out of six members of the ethics committee said he's still doing it knowingly and with intent. that is what this issue is about. i've always led the way with transparency, honesty, and been fully transparent when i served the state legislature for 20 years. i always file on time. that is why people don't trust tom malinowski. >> when you were nominated as assistant secretary, you committed in writing that you would divest your interest in a chinese insurance company within
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90 days of your senate confirmation to obviate any appearance of a conflict. but you did not sell that stock for 15 months later. what happened there? >> that was a recommendation the state department made to me, which i accepted, i instructed my broker to make a sale, and we discovered a year later that he had not done so. the house office of congressional ethics looked at that. i shared the documentation demonstrating i made a good-faith effort to sell that stock. it is interesting you mention a chinese stock. senator kaine, he invested in a chinese company called alibaba, one of the largest companies in china, a company that does business with the chinese men harry, that helped -- military, that helped the government against its own people. he was called out for a by
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chinese dissidents who wrote an op-ed piece in the star-ledger, and eventually sold that stock, prism a blue because he was shamed into doing so. i know that republicans want to make this an issue for me, but they are running the wrong guy against me to make this an issue. >> what is clear is this is a repeated behavior of tom malinowski. he ignored the rules because it did not benefit him. it took him over a year to sell the stocks. that is the repeated behavior now. in washington, d.c., for 30 years, he's doing it again. he's hiding from the voters the fact he violated law to ban investors of congress for insider trading, and is not being transparent with voters. that is what this issue is about. ethics, not transparency. it is a repeated action by tom malinowski.
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he has one standard for himself and another for everybody else. >> senator, nearly two years out of office, donald trump remains the omnipresent figure in american politics. regardless of his policies, what are your personal views of him, and what would you as an american like the congressional committee investigating the january 6 attacks on the u.s. capital to ask him if he appears under subpoena? sen. kean: on january 6, i put out a bipartisan statement discussed by what is going on. i played it out with loretta weinberg, my senate majority leader panel partner. saying this is not who we are as americans, this is not who we are as a country. and those who violated the law should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
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i had that opinion then, and i still have that opinion. what i have to focus on going forward is finding common ground to have more transparency in election results, so republicans and democrats alike, and supporters going back decades have undermined the legitimacy and consequences of the election so every single elected official should lead by example and making sure we have transparency in the voting process, and that is the important thing to do. >> thank you. congressman? rep. malinowski: you asked him about donald trump, and most he could muster was a condemnation of the rioters on january 6. it is kind of like just blaming the hijackers for the 9/11 attacks and leaving out osama bin laden. one month after the january 6
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attack, the republican national committee led by ronald mcdaniel, who just campaigned with mr. kean in warren county issued a statement saying what happened on january 6 legitimate political discourse. every republican leader except for senator kean distanced themselves from that statement, condemned the statement, he hid from the press, refused to answer questions, and this spring, he said -- this is the real answer to your question, that he would have donald trump back no matter what donald trump does. who does that? if the guy shoots someone on fifth avenue, will tom kean have his back? that is exactly what he said. to this day, he's not taken that back. he did not answer your question. and this is the leader of the republican party. i would not talk about him if he was just a former president. this is a person for republican primary today, he would be their president. it is a very important question, he evades it for a reason.
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>> senator, let me ask you a follow-up. your father, who i believe is here tonight, holds in his highest regard, he said donald trump was not fit to serve as president. perhaps it can be a yes or no answer, do you agree? sen. kean: i think that people in this district are focused on the economy and inflation, the highest rate it has been in 40 years. right now we've got to get with this year's election cycle, people focused on the highest rate of inflation, highest rate of spending, out-of-control gas prices, energy security, home security, those are the things people are focusing on right now. when you asked me about stocks, i answered your question, even though it was an uncomfortable subject for me. i think we can see who's willing
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to look people in the eyes, answer their questions, who is evading things they simply don't want to answer. he doesn't want to attend -- offend the modern crowd, moderate in his party, so he's avoiding the question. >> let me ask one last follow-up. maybe it will be a word word answer to this question. who won the 2020 presidential election, biden or trump? sen. kean: i said in november of 2020 joe biden would be the next president of the united states and that he won the election. i also said i would vote to certify those election results. >> thank you. congressman, midterm elections are historically a referendum on the party that occupies the white house. your own polling has president biden 10 points underwater in the seventh district. has joe biden become the
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president you would hope you would be? rep. malinowski: that same poll had me running about 10 points ahead of joe biden. i'm not sure if i buy the assumption midterm elections are just a referendum on the president. this is between me and tonkin junior, we are on the ticket and that is what voters will be deciding. i have criticized joe biden for some things, tried to set a good example for tonkin junior, you can criticize the leader of your party. i criticize him on the disastrous withdrawal from afghanistan and decision to withdraw based on the bed agreement that donald trump had signed with the taliban. i criticize him for his decision on student loan forgiveness, for example. i did not vote for that. but at the same time, i give him a tremendous amount of credit for helping lead our country back from the great depression
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our economy was in in 2020 and 2021, and working with democrats and in some cases, republicans, to pass one of the most historic legislative agendas congress has ever passed from the bipartisan instructor -- infra structure bill, which the former administration would never have done to the chips act, gun violence prevention legislation, the medicare negotiating drug prices. i think back to 2016, donald trump, when he wasn't talking about kicking the immigrants out of america, there are three things he ran on that made sense, negotiated drug prices -- companies pay for that, he did not get it done. joe biden did. sen. kean: my opponent votes with joe biden 99% of the time. he voted with nancy pelosi 100% of the time. just a couple of weeks ago, he voted against allowing for more oversight and more review on
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disasters -- the disastrous afghanistan pole. he said one thing, and when you are watching, he votes the other way. he follows joe biden's and nancy pelosi's lead 100% of the time. because he follows their lead again and again, even though he was warned not to do so, he is directly responsible, tom malinowski, is for the high inflation, he's not solved the problems people sent him down there to solve. that is why he's going to lose this race in november, focusing too much on people who are in d.c. and not enough on the people he's supposed to -- were supposed to be his constituents. >> i want to do a follow-up on that. congressman, whether democrats are in the majority or the minority, is it time for nancy pelosi to step aside for someone else? rep. malinowski: i actually think that is a moot question,
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because she did promise in 2018 she would serve two terms, and that is done now. i don't expect her to run. if she does, i will hold her to that promise. here's the difference. you guys asked me a lot in 2018 if i would support nancy pelosi for speaker. i always said i would not support her or anybody else unless they committed to me they would help me deliver from new jersey by passing an infrastructure bill by funding for the gateway tunnel, letting me get a vote on the house of representatives. she made those commitments to me personally, that is why i gave her my vote. yesterday, tom kean junior, he said he would support kevin mccarthy for speaker of the house of representatives, who opposes us on all of those issues, and he gave away his support for nothing, for free. think about how weak that is, how this guy just craves the
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support and attention of more powerful men, that he would give away his vote for nothing. i would never do that, the matter who is running for speaker of the house. >> tom malinowski broke his promises to the voters. he said he would never vote for a wreck and c -- reconciliation bill, that is increasing property taxes and the bill of the families of new jersey. he gave away his vote because nancy pelosi knows he's the most reliable vote in the house delegation in new jersey. for example, the inflation reduction act had not even been voted on. tom malinowski promised not to vote for it just a couple of weeks ago that did not include the restoration of the salt reduction. that hurt our leverage. the bill hadn't even been written yet. bill mentioned and others were negotiating that issue. but this is not a democratic issue.
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the salt reduction is developed by bernie sanders, aoc, finding the people like i have, to reduce spending, and make sure we had unaffordability for new jersey. when i announced he was here, when i told him to his face restoring the salt reduction was on my priorities, and making sure the gateway project was fully funded, that is what i said directly to his face, -- on that day. >> congressman, i want to give you 30 seconds to respond. rep. malinowski: i never said i would vote against any reconciliation bill, that would be stupid. i said i would never vote against a reconciliation bill that would raise our individual tax rates. obviously i'm not going to vote against lowering prescription drug prices for seniors when it is presented to me. and for republicans like tom keene to attack me on this, it
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is like a bank robber attacking the police for not having arrested him yet. kevin mccarthy is the most anti-sump deduction member of the house of representatives. you are not going to get him to change on this. jim jordan is not going to help you on this. what is worse, if there is a republican majority in congress, normally the 10% cap will expire in 2025. if democrats are there at the very least, i can promise we will let it expire. if you guys are in charge, you will vote to extend the 10% cap for another five to 10 years, or indefinitely. mark my words. >> at this point i want to move -- sen. kean: tom malinowski broke his promise for six years. he told voters of this district he would restore the salt adduction. he broke his word in that regard. he was the first person in the entire new jersey delegation this past cycle to simply say he was going to vote for the
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inflation reduction act efforts without the salt adduction. and he heard everybody else in new jersey. republicans and democrats alike, negotiating position. other staffers and house members for negotiating. this is not a republican or democratic issue. aoc opposes the salt deduction. joe manchin opposes the salt deduction. bernie sanders. what you need is someone who has actually written legislation and changed the tax codes, who can get down and find that common ground so in 2025 comes through, the reaction to restore the salt deduction. rep. malinowski: i've signed two bills in the house of representatives to restore the salt deduction. aoc voted against it, and i got it through. a 50-50 senate, where in order to do this, you need 10 republican senators, which we do
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not have because your party is 100% opposed to this. i have 97%, 98% of democrats. you are 100% opposed to it. if you understand, which you don't, if you understand how the house works, if your party is in charge of the house, they will never even put a bill to a vote in the house of representatives to restore the salt deduction, but they will put a bill to vote by 20 25 to extend the 10% cap, and don't care whether you will vote for it or not, they don't care what you think anymore than they care about what my decent republican predecessor, who tried to do what you are saying you will do, and failed, they will do what they want. this is the reality. and somehow persuade marjorie taylor greene and jim jordan and kevin mccarthy to do something for new jersey -- sen. kean: that is how your
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washington d.c. works, how your representatives work, because you have been a d.c. insider for 30 years. over the course of the last four years, it is clear on the salt deduction, or any other bill coming through the house, you have put nancy pelosi's primaries over those of new jersey. -- >> there are issues i want to -- let's move on. there are a lot of important issues to talk about. i want to talk about two issues you have taken seriously in the seventh district, abortion and inflation. i know that is what a lot of your constituents want to hear about. senator, you say you are pro-choice, but you voted against codifying legal abortion in the new jersey senate during your final days in the legislature. and a page on your campaign
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website says you are a fierce defender of>> voted against thet would've allowed for abortion upon demand. i support a woman's right to choose and have a 20 year career in the state legislature. up until 20 weeks that if the determination of the mother. post two weeks, -- 20 weeks. i supported family-planning services efforts for women. this is an issue that is best handled at the state level. i would oppose a national ban on abortion.
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my opponent had an extreme position. he would support abortion on demand through the ninth month as national policy. a baby could be at 40 weeks and could be killed at 40 weeks and in the ninth month. that is an extreme position. 90% of the country oppose that position. >> congressman, we have a little bit more time on the clock for this one. >> first of all, she did not support family-planning, he voted again and again against it. then he voted against kind of find january.
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then he put out that pro-life statement. then he said he was pro-choice, then he could not explain his position, then he said he would be for a 20 week ban. he wants to ban abortions with exceptions that protect the political life of him. nobody is for late-term abortion on demand. the idea that there are new jersey women that are going to be carrying the baby until the eighth month and suddenly want to terminate the pregnancy for the heck of it is absolutely crazy. it only happens when there is a threat to the life of the woman. i believe that painful, difficult decision under those circumstances should be made by woman and her doctor. tom king junior now says the government should step in and make that decision for a woman
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and her doctor. as far as the rest of the country, republicans are ran in late-term abortion. they are banning abortion everywhere. from every stage of pregnancy without regard to the life of the baby or woman. he just told you it is a states rights issue which means he will not do a single thing about that. i will codify roe v. wade for the country as a whole. >> senator, i want to ask you a follow-up. you support a ban at 20 weeks. with some exceptions. how did you arrive at 20 weeks? why not 18 weeks? why not 22 weeks? what is the science he used to arrive at 20? >> when you look at fetal
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viability, that is where 20 weeks is an that is how i came up with that. >> congressman? >> i do not think we need to be debating the science of beetle viability although that is not with the sign says. let's talk about the reality of the united states congress if he wins and kevin mccarthy become speaker. for the two years, our
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protections are on the line. and of course the lives and health of women. >> congressman, on the same subject, you support legal abortion without any restrictions. do you believe there is any point between conception and birth where you would say a woman should be prohibited from having an abortion? >> we voted for a bill that would embrace the principle of the roe v. wade decision. that states cannot ban abortions up to what real medical experts considered to be fetal viability. and after that, the restrictions
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cannot prohibit abortion when the life or health of the mother is at risk. and that decision has to be made by a doctor with the mother, not by the state. that is the difference. nobody is talking about abortion on demand in the eighth month. these things only happen when there is a threat to the life or health of the woman. when a doctor developers --delivers terrible news to a woman who is expecting to have a child. i feel very strongly the decision should be made by the doctor, the woman, the family. that we should not have government panels or have law enforcement looking over the shoulders of the decision-makers as a woman is lying in the hospital bleeding. that would be wrong. i against that. >> senator?
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>> i have been very clear. i support a woman's right to choose through the 20th week. after that time, rape, incest and health of the mother are the exceptions. my opponent supports abortion on demand through the eighth month. i think that is an extreme position. >> senator kean, support the elimination of any barriers that would prevent medicaid? >> i would not. on the state level, i supported
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family-planning services for women who were at 20% of the poverty line. >> congressman? >> he voted to defund plant parenthood -- planned parenthood multiple times. i really do not understand what he is saying given the clear record that he voted to make new jersey the first state in the country deny funding to planned parenthood. fortunately, it was restored. we did that the federal level as well. >> congressman, i want to ship to inflation. -- shift to inflation.
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gas prices, energy costs come out the price of groceries, -- energy costs, the person groceries keeps going up. what is your plan to lower prices and reduce inflation? >> what we did was to bring back jobs and consumer spending at a moment in time when tens of millions of americans were unemployed, when every small business was shut down, when our economic future looked incredibly bleak, we brought back the jobs the consumer spending. we did that before we were able to bring back the supply of the goods and the result of that is the terrible inflation we are suffering right now that is
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affecting every single one of us. having identified the problem, you can think about the solution. we are actually doing something about this. i give today, it cost about 20 thousand dollars to bring a container in. that is down to four thousand dollars because of the investments we made. we passed the chips at, which is beginning to bring back the supply chains that we need. we have to go after monopolies and price gouging. i have an answer to how we can do this and i would love to hear my opponents answer. >> senator, you have 30 seconds
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on your clock. same question. what is your plan to make the american economy back? what is your plan to reduce prices? >> i talked to people. there is an individual who sets his monthly expenses are up $800 . that is unacceptable for him and for families across this district. bama for the very --tom >> my opy
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pelosi one hundred percent of
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the time and continues to support the arbery just spending coming out of washington dc. >> congressman, 30 more seconds on the economy. >> i see we are playing the nancy pelosi game again. she did not question about what would he cut. you think you will control inflation? he did not name a single program he would cut. this is important because his party does have a plan here. they just said if they take control of the house, they will once again shut down the government.
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he is running
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>> gas prices are going up, the cost of energy, home heating. it is all going more expensive. >> senator, what is your view on higher interest rates and price controls? do you think they reduce inflation or will they dried this nation into a recession? >> at least 3% of the current interest rate is due to my opponent following nancy pelosi. it means congress has to do its part by not outsourcing the
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decisions it and actually listening to the constituents. we have to shorten the supply chains, we have to make ourselves energy independent. if we were in california and could not have new jobs and you were told you had to charge your cars at certain times, that is not who we are as a country. >> congressman? >> we passed a huge bill to shorten our supply chains. we passed a bill to shorten our dependence on foreign oil.
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every republican voted against it. obviously, he has been trying to say nancy pelosi one hundred times in this debate. january 6, nancy pelosi defended the republic and the constitution. i would say nancy pelosi has a lot more balls than tom king junior. >> this is moving more quickly than i anticipated. i want to get to all the questions that i had. >> i did a little town hall at a synagogue and they invited you to come as well. you did not even respond to them.
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a republican who supports you says i cannot get my guy to come. why is it that you never hold public town hall meetings, why are you so invisible in the district that you want to represent? >> i have always listen to my constituents. i was able to cut some spending out of trenton, find solutions that would accommodate the future people who live and work in the state. my job is to listen to voters concerns and find solutions.
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>> i helped 130 town halls since i was elected. you have held zero. my senses we send you to washington and we will never see you again because we do not see you now.
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allies come up. the sanctions to be able to respond. this is working. we need to continue to support them. we need to hold other countries around the world accountable. i have been them accountable.
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>> we should be defending ukraine. we have to ensure we do that as a nation. >> what kind of weapon would you send? >> the planes and the range of missiles, they have always expressed concern about the range of the missiles. >> i sponsor legislation to provide weapons to ukraine.
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you are out of your depth here. i have been leading efforts in washington to try to hold the russian government accountable. i worked for senator john mccain , i passed major legislation to strengthen our anti-money laundering laws to prevent russian money from coming into the united states. i passed legislation this year to try to give ourselves as a country the authority to seize the assets we were sanctioning so that we could use them to rebuild ukraine. i do not recall seeing you at those meetings. >> when president biden pulled out of afghanistan, we try to
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get oversight and you blocked that. it emboldened vladimir putin. you thought sanctions were going to be enough. >> i did not think enough. i wanted to prevent --provide them with antitank weapons. >> i think we have time for one less question. -- last question. it was heartbreaking for me to watch my friend fred guttenberg speak about a verdict of life in prison for the man who murdered his 14-year-old daughter. none of us should ever want to
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be in that position. i would like to know what you would say to fathers like him about your plan to reduce school shootings that go --? >> i supported commonsense plans then made our community safer. i support efforts that cannot decrease the red flag laws and i would also have additional mental health funding and make sure our schools are safer. i would also support a nationwide assault weapon ban and we need to do whatever we can to reduce that type of balance anywhere in the country. -- violence anywhere in the country.
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>> would beat the nra and passed a bill that strengthened our background check system. we need to take the excellent laws we have in new jersey and we need to nationalize them. they work in new jersey. i am glad to see the senator has evolved on this. he used to get an a+ grade from the nra. >> it is time now to move to the closing statements.
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each candidate will have 90 seconds. we will start with the congressman. >> thank you for an excellent debate. i think it is clear that i want to go to congress because i want to do something. tom kean wants to go because he wants to be something. he has been losing for the seat for 20 years. we both agree inflation is a huge problem but only one of us has proposed a concrete plan to deal with that. it is clear only one of us is going to stand by american women who see their freedom is being taken away right now. i will codify roe v. wade, he will vote against it. it is clear only one of us is going to stand up to extremism, whether it is coming from the far right or the far left.
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i think it is no surprise that there was only one of us here who has attracted support from all parties in our district, who has support from democrats and independents. nobody is crossing the aisle to support tom kean. in that spirit, i ask for your support to represent this district, talking to people, doing town halls, listening to their concerns and fighting for you in the congress for another two years. thank you very much. >> what is clear is that tom malinowski listens to nancy pelosi 100% of the time.
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if he goes to washington dc as he has asked the last four years, he will only vote for more spending and more things that will make our state and our country worse. i will vote to support to shorten supply chains. i have always worked to find the common ground for the people who want to make new jersey home. tonight, i am asking for your vote to solve problems, reach across party lines and address issues many americans are concerned about. >> that brings the seventh
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district congressional debate to a close. i would like to remind everyone the deadline to register to vote is this tuesday. next sunday night is a debate for the 11th district. two weeks from tonight's the third district. thank you congressman malinowski. thank you senator kean. good luck to each of you. for those watching, thank you and good night.
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