Beshear, Fletcher Go Head-To-Head In Televised Debate

By  | 

A popular talking point for both incumbent Ernie Fletcher and challenger Steve Beshear during the hour-long debate, was ethics; each man said the other had none.

“Twelve ordinary citizens there, that listened to all the evidence, indicted 27 of this fella's political cronies and then indicted him too,” says Beshear.

“The way you handled Kentucky Central, you said everyone was made whole but there were thousands that lost their life savings,” says Governor Fletcher.

The candidates had opposite views about teaching intelligent design in schools.

“I think there's nothing wrong with teaching that, in fact, i think to teach that is part of our founding heritage and i think it's very important,” says Fletcher.

"I believe that science ought to be taught in schools and religion ought to be taught at home and in the churches and in the synagogues,” says Beshear.

They also took opposite positions on abortion, same-sex unions, and of course, casino gaming.

Beshear says, “We’ll realize about 500 million a year in new tax revenue that we can spend on education, economic development, and health care.”

“Almost two-thirds of that will be shipped out of state. That money will come out of the economies,” says Governor Fletcher.

Both candidates opposed the idea of a statewide smoking ban. Fletcher seemed amused at Beshear's questions about his administration's political troubles in Frankfort.

“Well first, Steve, you ought to know better. Back when you were there you used to have to change your registration from Democrat to even get a job,” says Governor Fletcher.

“As an old prosecutor once told me, Steve, when you're ahead just look up and say, 'I rest my case’” says Beshear.

Political scientists say they don't expect the debate to have a major impact on the governor's race. Some polls show Beshear is leading by 17 to 20 percentage points.