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tv   Campaign 2020 Maine U.S. Senate Debate  CSPAN  September 13, 2020 3:05pm-4:02pm EDT

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outbreaks. but that's not going to happen this year, next year, or the year after. it's going to take several years for that to take place. so we have to be in this for the long haul. >> the lancet's richard horton tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span's q&a. >> incumbent maine senator susan collins faced democrat sarah gideon and two independents in a debate. the race is considered one of the most expensive and competitive in the country. senator collins is running for a fifth term. here is the debate, hosted by several maine news organizations. pat: good evening at welcome to our decision maine 2020 u.s. senate candidate debate. i am news center maine's pat
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callahan. in a unique partnership tonight, we are working together with the portland press harold and the bangor daily news to get you the answers you need to cast your ballot. coincidentally, this first meeting of the candidates falls on the 19th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, a day when we remember the heroes and honor the lives lost. it is also a day when americans feel even more patriotic than they usually do, and part of our civic duty is to make informed choices on election day. we want to help you do that, so we are going to be asking questions for the four candidates. the incumbent is republican susan collins, seeking election to a fifth term. the democrat is speaker of the main house, sara gideon. there are two independents, max linn and lisa savage, who belongs to the green independent party, but is not running as a party candidate on the ballot.
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there has been plenty of heat in the campaign. our hope is to shed some light on important issues. the first round of questions will be addressed to each candidate specifically. subsequent rounds will address policy issues, also with one minute for first answers, and we will be open to follow-ups and discussions. we are going to be posing questions submitted by viewers and readers and subscribers of the portland press herald and the bangor daily news. at the end, each candidate will have one minute for a closing statement. senator collins, we learned this week president trump new in early february that the coronavirus is deadlier than the flu and it is airborne, but he purposely downplayed the seriousness of that threat in public and days later was holding one of his big rallies in new hampshire. did the president fail in his responsibility to protect the health and safety of americans? sen. collins: i believe the president should have been straightforward with the american people. the american people can take
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hard facts, and he had an obligation as president to be straightforward with them and to tell all that he has known. i have said, since the beginning, that the president's performance has been uneven. and that he should follow the advice of his excellent medical advisors. pat: speaker gideon, you have talked about running the house of representatives in a bipartisan manner, symbolized by rearranging the seats so democrat and republican lawmakers were sitting together. when you pulled members on coming back to address the coronavirus and other emergency members -- measures, most members do not respond. have you really built a working relationship with republicans in augusta, something you could do in washington as well? sen. collins: thank you for the -- rep. gideon: thank you for the question. ainers, form
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tuning in tonight. i think my record in augusta speaks for itself. bringing together democrats, republicans and independents is something i have worked hard to do and been successful at even in the most challenging times. whether it was looking at health care, both protecting health care that exists under the aca, but also expanding it, whether it was tackling climate change, bringing people together to combat the opioid crisis, or lift children out of poverty, i think my record speaks for itself and i stand by it. pat: max linn, mainers know very little about you. you have not held office before. you have been republican and democrat and now you are running as an independent. you tried to get on the ballot two years ago and failed. there were signatures deemed fraudulent. should voters trust you to act with integrity if you're part of their congressional delegation? mr. linn: that is an excellent question and i can assure the viewers we are going to have a lot of fun tonight. i am sort of from the old school. i was taught by my mother and father that or i address anybody
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i don't know, i introduce myself. my name is max linn. i have been a certified financial planner and international businessman for over 35 years. i think we all know in our hearts that our politics needs something different. tonight two of my opponents, raisedd susan, have upwards of $100 million in dark money from washington, d.c. to try to buy your vote. that's what i'm competing against, $100 million, so i know in order for me to win your vote and win here tonight i have to be way outside the box. i have to be that something different. so i want to share with our moderators and viewers, a lot of times when our moderators ask me a question, i might put that question aside. because i know i have to slay these giants. and it is not going to be easy. so i'm going to have to be outside the box. mr. linn, your time is up
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for the round. max: that is my strategy, so be patient with me. pat: we appreciate that. finally, lisa savage, you have been a frequent protester about ironworks and have encouraged pivoting from building warships to focusing on clean energy manufacturing, for example. how realistic is that? can you assure the people who work at bath and the millions of people whose businesses depend on that yard that you are going to have their backs if you are part of our delegation? ms. savage: thank you for the question, pat. thank you, rachel and mike, for being here. thank you, candidates, and the audience listening in. it is a good question and i do believe a green new deal could send federal funding in the direction of our existing great bath ironworks shipyard to build something, solutions that would mitigate climate change. we are in a climate emergency now. we see the west coast on fire. it just happened during a pandemic. bath ironworks got some money under the defense production act and made those machines they use
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at -- to make the covid-19 testing swabs. they did it very quickly with reinvestment. i also know economists research shows building something else, like a clean energy system or a light rail system, would actually create 50% additional jobs, with the same billion-dollar investment. so i think it is a win for climate and a win for jobs in maine. i think it could certainly be done as a green new deal. pat: thank you. our next question is going to come from rachel, an education and political reporter with the portland press herald. >> thank you, pat. the coronavirus pandemic exposed inadequacies in our health care system. how would you ensure everyone who needs health care has access to it and can afford it? we will start with speaker gideon. rep. gideon: thank you for that question. all of us know that even before this pandemic started, we saw mainers making terrible choices everyday about whether they would see a doctor or put food on the table. nobody should have to make a choice like that and everybody deserves access to health care they can afford.
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i know once upon a time senator collins agreed with that. in fact, in the beginning of her senate career she said it was one of her top priorities. and yet she was a key vote for the 2017 tax bill, which has enabled republicans across the country to bring forward a lawsuit, even during a pandemic, that threatens to take away people's health care. here in maine we had to pick up the pieces. in the legislature we protected the core provisions of the aca, ensuring that people with pre-existing conditions and seniors would be covered. in the senate, this is what i will continue to do. i think we need a public option available for people to buy medicare if they want it, and we need to increase, to make medicare better, allow medicare to negotiate with drug companies for lower costs, and make sure people have the health insurance they need. pat: mr. linn? mr. linn: could you repeat the question? >> how to make sure everyone who
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needs health care has access to it and can afford it. mr. linn: that is an excellent question, but i have to be way outside the box tonight because i'm competing against $100 million. i'm going to put your question aside because i have a bombshell to announce tonight. >> i would ask that you stick with the question. mr. linn: requested denied. i would like to say the eyes and years and the voices of the people, we represent nature and the wilderness. that brings me to the cmp corridor. how many people -- up to 80,000 people -- pat: do you have any interest in health care? we can talk about that and other things later. mr. linn: mr. linn: request denied again, and i appreciate that. these moderators are great, and i apologize because i know you are doing your job as best as possible, but please realize -- i have not started my time, i am addressing this, and you are already flushing me. pat: that was the time allotted. mr. linn: let me ask for clarity. i am competing against $100
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million. they are the front runners. in order for me to be the u.s. senate candidate, i need to be out-of-the-box. pat: we need to know where you stand on the issues. mr. linn: i have to be out-of-the-box and different. i want the question, but i don't want to be judged on my answer because the only people judging my answer are the main voters. don't interrupt me because i am already fighting against $100 million. i don't want to fight the moderators all night. part of my strategy is to be outside the box. pat: let's hear from ms. savage on the health care question. ms. savage: as a schoolteacher in central maine for 25 years, even before the pandemic hit and we moved into a public health emergency, i saw the families around me struggling to get adequate health care. many of the children had health care, but the adults in the family did not, and nobody had adequate dental care. that is not fair. that should not be the case in the wealthiest nation in the world. i stand for medicare for all, single-payer universal health
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care, which should be expanded to cover everyone who is not covered now, and it should be improved to cover dental and mental health and vision and hearing that are not covered now. i think the majority of people in the united states agree. i know the majority of people in maine agree. i know that under ranked choice voting, it is safe that if voters in maine agree with me they need medicare for all, they can rank me first without any fear of spoiling the election and they can show at -- show with that vote that they want medicare for all. pat: senator collins? sen. collins: there are three key factors when it comes to health care. first of all we need transparency in pricing. you should know what the medical procedure is going to cost before you have it. second, we need to ensure access. that means maintaining our rural hospitals. the proposal that sara has
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endorsed would destroy our rural hospitals because they would be reimbursed under the medicare or medicaid rate. that is not enough for them to survive, and making critical access hospitals does not solve the problem. we need to make it more affordable. there is a huge difference in sara and me on the issue of the individual mandate. , whichports this tax falls 80% of those who pay the tax for not having insurance that they can't afford, make under $50,000 per year. what she is proposing is that a single mom pay a tax penalty of $1000 if she cannot afford insurance. pat: speaker gideon, quick rebuttal? mr. linn: the -- rep. gideon: thank you very much. senator collins mentioned the individual mandate. senator collins likes to be on both sides of the health care
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issue, holding up her vote against repealing it on the one hand, but voting 12 times to either undermine it or repeal it in other cases, and then voting for the tax bill, which has put it in jeopardy. to be clear, senator collins knew exactly what would happen when she voted for that tax bill. she signed onto an amicus brief in 2012, saying without the individual mandate, the health care law is unconstitutional. pat: the next question comes from mike sheppard, the politics editor for the bangor daily news. >> we have been asking readers all year what they care about most. right now, the economy is number one. the senate cannot agree on a new stimulus package. state and local budgets are busting. families are struggling. gabriel, a 2020 college graduate from bangor facing an unstable job market, wanted me to ask you how you would balance public health with economic growth. the question goes to max linn. mr. linn: i am the only certified financial planner here. that is my wheelhouse, financial planning. for the time being, i plan to answer all these questions as i
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see fit. so i'm going to put your question aside because i have a lot of bombshells i want to announce tonight and i will just get right to it. that is, we all know the fight we have had with cmp. >> can we go back to economics? mr. linn: no, we can't, because right now -- next week i am filing a lawsuit against cmp and we are going to stop cmp in their tracks and i am going to show you what it means to stop cmp, because they have fired big law firms, and now i have. we have a lawsuit coming, max linn and people of maine versus cmp. i can promise you as your next u.s. senator, cmp will be stopped and i can promise you with susan or sara, cmp will go through and destroy our cherished wilderness and we cannot let that happen. thank you. pat: lisa savage? ms. savage: thank you, michael, for that question. i think our lack of single-payer universal health care is one of the biggest economic problems people in maine are facing. because a small business has to grapple with funding the health
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care of their workers. big business has to grapple with funding health care of workers, and many people who lose their homes, default on their mortgage, can't pay their grocery bill, it is because there was an illness in the family and, even though they had health insurance, the cost became catastrophic. that is not fair. i stand for medicare for all and i believe medicare for all would solve many of our economic problems here in this country. we are the only wealthy country that does not have universal single-payer health care. in fact, many non-wealthy countries have universal single-payer health care. many of them got it after world war ii. it is far past time for us to do that and, under ranked choice voting, if maine voters agree with me, they can vote for me to show that they agree with me we need medicare for all yesterday, especially in an economic crisis. pat: senator collins? sen. collins: small businesses are the key to jobs in the state
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of maine. my family has owned and operated a small business in northern maine for 176 years. 176 years. when the coronavirus struck, it instantly became apparent that our small businesses were in dire trouble. i co-authored the paycheck protection program to help small businesses stay afloat and provide jobs for their employees. that is how 28,000 small businesses -- that is three out of four -- sustained 250,000 jobs in our state. it has also brought $2.3 billion dollars to our state in forgivable loans, as long as the majority of the money is used on paychecks. that was the whole theory behind
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this and it has been enormously successful. pat: speaker gideon? speaker gideon: thank you. gabriel, i want to start by thanking you for that question. it is an incredibly important one. it was before covid-19, and now i think the issues are even more acute. there are a number of things we need to focus on. we need to make sure we are building the digital infrastructure in this state that allows businesses to grow and scale up and allows people like you to work here. i also think we need stronger job training and education programs, and we need to directly address how high the cost of higher education is to four-year and technical education. there is another problem, and that is covid. we have to have public health in order to have a healthy economy. unfortunately, we see president trump, as pat mentioned, lying about where we were in this state. i want to ask senator collins who she thinks should be leading
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this country. she has neglected to answer that question and i would like to give her the opportunity. i think joe biden should be our leader to help us with public health and rebuilding the economy. pat: would you care to respond? sen. collins: pat, let me say this. i don't think the people of maine need my advice on whom to support for president. last week i was on a bus tour all over the state of maine. not a single person asked me, who should be our next president? what they did say was how grateful they were for the paycheck protection program that i wrote, because it preserved their job or their small business. they talked about the cost of health care. they talked about the work that i had done to bring transportation money to the state of maine. those are the issues people care about. pat: thank you, senator. as we mentioned, we have a number of questions from voters in maine.
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this comes from a bangor daily news subscriber in clifton. his name is martin and he asks, how would you address our environmental and sustainability issues in a way that builds bridges between political views? it seems appropriate it goes to lisa savage first. ms. savage: i think we need a public transportation system here in maine to get people out of their cars and that would be a huge win for climate. we have public transportation very locally in some cities, but we could have a light rail system that would provide public transportation between areas in maine, and i think that would help a lot. we also need to stop building things that drive climate change and, instead, turn our capacity to building things that will mitigate the effects of climate change. i stand for the green new deal. that is a comprehensive plan that not only includes converting our industrial capacity, but also regenerative agriculture, a growth area for maine. our farmers are younger than most states. it also would include consumer
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owned and operated utilities, such as broadband internet, water systems, and electricity. i also oppose the cmp corridor and i think multinational corporations outside of maine should not be making decisions about maine's electric grid. pat: thank you. senator collins? sen. collins: i think an issue that can bring us together is energy storage. i have introduced a bipartisan bill in the senate, so that we can invest in projects, so we can figure out how to store wind energy when the wind is not blowing, and solar energy when the sun is not shining. it has widespread support, and i am hopeful we will get it through. i have also been an extremely strong supporter of the university of maine's consortium that is developing offshore wind. this has the potential to make
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maine the chief supplier of electricity for the east coast. and i have secured tens of millions of dollars to advance that research at the university maine and to give 2000 university of maine students paid internships. i would note that, according to the portland press herald, sara does not pay her interns despite raising all this money. i do and always have. pat: speaker gideon? mr. linn: -- speaker gideon: thank you. to address the question? thank you so much for the question, and it is an incredibly important one. i think it is the question of our time, because already here in maine we feel the effects of climate change. during this campaign, i have spent time with blueberry farmers, on a lobster boat, and i have been with loggers. what i hear over and over again
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is that we are already feeling these effects and they are actually impacting our industries. that is why in the statehouse, we have taken on climate change, setting incredibly aggressive goals to reduce dirty carbon emissions and increase renewable energy generation. that is exactly the kind of thing that we need to be doing, not state-by-state, but on the federal level. we need to rejoin the paris climate accord, and i will push for that when i'm in the senate. we also need to restructure our transportation industry, modernizing both the infrastructure and the industry itself, and the same with our energy industry and our building industry, to get to net zero. thank you. pat: the question from the voter is, how do you find common ground on environmental and sustainability issues? mr. linn: as i mentioned, i am filing a class suit against cmp this week, so the cmp corridor will not happen, number one. but also, i have been a leader in the state, working for months to put the first high-speed train from southern maine to
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northern maine. i even meet with heather johnson in the governor's office. china, lastan, december, meeting with top engineering firms and law firms to get this done. isplatform, without a doubt, the number one talking about noble energy, not only in maine, in america. atave the converter website and it is 'snverting more of sara supporters and susan supporters -- and susan's supporters then ever before. it has never been seen in american history before, it is that innovative. it is the new converter website., never seen in american history before. susan's ppp program has been bankrupting small businesses, it has not been good. big corporations have been taking hundreds of millions of dollars out of it. sen. collins: i should be allowed to respond to that. this program has been enormously successful. mr. linn: corporations have been
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taking hundreds of millions of dollars out of it. sen. collins: if you talk to small businesses around our state, the average number of employees that a business with a ppp loan has is seven. so this clearly has rescued an enormous number, 28,000 small businesses in our state. pat: another question from rachel from the press herald. >> the black lives matter movement has drawn attention to issues of racial injustice and accountability of law enforcement. do you think america has a problem with systemic racism and police brutality? and if so, what do you propose doing about it? pat: senator collins, you will go first on this. sen. collins: first let me say that the brutal killings we have observed laid bare a legacy of racial injustice we must address. i do want to say that the vast majority of law enforcement are honorable people who risk their lives every day for us.
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what can we do about it? first, we need to enact police reform legislation. i was disappointed that tim scott bill to do so was blocked in the senate by chuck schumer, second, we need to have more educational opportunity, in order to lift families of color out of poverty. third, we need to illuminate the health disparities in the treatment of communities of color. i held the first senate hearing to look at the impact of covid-19 on community of colors - communities of color, and sadly enough, maine has the worst disparity in the nation. host: speaker gideon? spkr. gideon: thank you for that question. when george floyd was murdered, it was the time americans seem
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to have a conversation about that legacy of bigotry and the way it has seeped into virtually every aspect of our lives and created racial injustice, no matter where we look. nowhere is that more apparent i think that in the criminal justice system, where we see these incidences of violence, brutality and even killing. unfortunately, at a time when americans were ready to have this conversation, our president instead chose to sow division and hatred, even putting teargas out to crowds of protesters. the reality is we need immediate action, banning chokeholds, eliminating racial profiling, bias training, we need real leadership. that is why people keep asking sen. collins who she thinks should be leading this country? it is not that people in maine are asking for advice on who to vote for, it is they want to
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know who their senator thinks should be leading us. host: max linn? max: i have been involved in black lives matter helping african-americans get out of jail through the innocence project. also announcing now i've created a website for dialogue called black lives matter national this country is lacking dialogue so i have credit a website for that, black lives matter national this is a serious problem but we do not want to defund our police. we need a strong police force. i want my police tough when they have to be an gentle and nice when they have to be. my opponents want to defund, sara and susan talk about defunding and having washington tell police department how they have to manage their policemen. our police are the solid rock between solid society and
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mayhem. host: i want to go back to speaker gideon and then sen. collins, quick response? spkr. gideon: i want to be clear. i do not support defunding the police. we do need to make sure we make changes that ensure people of color do not continue to be brutalized or killed. host: sen. collins? sen. collins: i was endorsed this week by the national fraternal order of police. i obviously do not support defunding police. but sara gideon has received $6 million from groups that do favor defunding the police. so i am if she is now going to refund that money. host: i'm going to let lisa savage weigh in on this question. lisa: as a public school teacher i have been defunded many times and i still went ahead and did my job. we have a serious racial justice
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problem here in the country. that has been in place for generations. one big game changer is now everyone has a video camera and they know how to share the video. we have seen police acting as judge, jury and executioner, on black bodies, that were accused and never convicted, of using a counterfeit $20 bill? should that be a capital crime? i do think we need to demilitarized the police. all this military equipment the pentagon has been sending to police forces in our cities has made things more dangerous, not safer. many police would tell you they are being sent into situations where a social worker or a mental health crisis worker, a community dispute resolution person, would be a much more appropriate resource to be sending into that situation. so, yes, i do think we have a problem. and we can partly address it through funding. we can also address that through holding police officers accountable, when they execute
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people on the street. host: thank you and with that we will take a break and we will be back with or decision maine 2020 u.s. senate debate, after this. >> the senate race long ago became the most expensive race in mains history. what measures would you support to get money out of politics and is this level of spending acceptable? >> thank you for the question. we all agree there's too much money in politics and we need reform and change and that's why i've introduced a reform agenda. people'so make sure
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voices are bigger than corporations voices. we need to do things like overturn citizens united. things likeo passing the disclose act which would require transparency around who is getting money. and he was running those dark money ads. sen. collins was the deciding vote against that disclose act and has taken funds in her time as a senator. without question if we want to get special interest out of things and make sure we are focusing on people and getting things done, we have to have reform. host: next up, max linn. max: an excellent question i will answer because my two opponents have raised upwards of $100 million in dark money. >> about $40 million dollars for candidates and it may be $100 million by the end of the year. max: $100 million and that is right up my line because i have created a new website, never seen in american politics
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before, called the converter website. it is guaranteed to take money out of politics. it makes their hundred million dollars in operable. you can see it at i have completely scrubbed my website and made of brand-new website never seen an american politics before, and right now, we are sampling susan's supporters and sara's supporters and it is converting at a rate of 85%-90%, a website that has never been seen in american history before. >> 85% of what? max: other supporters. >> of all their supporters, counting all of it. max: it is bringing it to me, the converter website, never seen an american history before. it will set the standard in the standard in amerco politics moving forward because americans are tired of opponents raising hundreds or multiple hundreds of billions. >> how any people have bent your website? max: well know, we have already tested it with about a hundred people.
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>> [laughter] all right. max: all you have to do is go to it. [crosstalk] the maine voters want to see what i'm talking about. host: you have made your point. lisa savage? lisa: i think getting money out of politics is simple. candidates can do what i have done. do not accept corporate donations. do not accept money from corporate lobbyists, corporate pac's, the pacs that launder corporate money so candidates can claim they are not taking it while taking it. my campaign has raised $120,000 from grassroots supporters because we do not believe corporate government is going to solve the problems we are facing in this country. corporations profit from the problems we are facing. when people are struggling to get by, they do not have a voice in the senate. i am the only non-millionaire up here.
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people in maine need a real working person to go and be their voice in the senate, and reflect the values and the needs of actual people that are not multimillionaires. so i think that getting people into congress, that are not owned by corporate interests is absolutely job one. host: mr. linn, senator collins turn. sen. collins: sara gideon has set a record in the amount of dark money that has flooded the airwaves since the state, i'm sure all of you out there are sick of them as i am, 70% of the ads either attacking me or promoting sara have come from out-of-state group, primarily dark money. i believe that there should be no dark money. there should be complete disclosure. sara said she supports the
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disclose act. the disclose act exempted powerful special interests, including the nra, and labor unions. that is not cleaning up the system. that is allowing dark money to continue, for certain powerful favored groups. she also has received corporate money, directly into her leadership pac, up until a few months before she decided to run. host: you want to respond to that, speaker gideon? spkr. gideon: yes, thank you very much. i want to make clear a couple of things. the first is when i made a decision to run for u.s. senate i made a decision to reject all corporate pac money. when we look at what does not get done in washington, whether around health care, lowering the cost of prescription drugs, fighting climate change, it is because the big pharmaceutical companies, oil and gas industries and help insurance companies have a seat at the
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table. it is important to reject corporate pack money and senator collins continues to take that money in this campaign. make no mistake, those outside groups are running as left and right for sen. collins. >> seeing those ads and everyone agrees their wallpaper at this point, if you could give a quick yes or no answer, would you support a constitutional amendment to change the rules to regulate that kind of money, which citizens united allows to happen? sen. collins? sen. collins: overturning citizens united would not to anything too bad dark money. host: so, no constitutional amendment on this? sen. collins: and it would take years. the better thing is to pass legislation that requires all donors to be disclosed, all of them. that is the way you and dark money. host:? constitutional amendment spkr. gideon: yes, i absolutely support a constitutional amendment to overturn citizens united. max: it seems a comic show
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between these two, sara and susan, raising over hundred million dollars of dark money. host: what you support a constitutional amendment? max: yes and that is what my website is about. host: ms. savage, would you support such amendment? lisa: i would. corporations are not people. and money is not a form of free speech under the first amendment. host: one says social security and medicare would be underfunded in 10 years. what proposals would you sponsor to ensure integrity of those programs and would that include taxation or a reduction in benefits? max linn? max: for clarity, i thought you were going to sara repeat that for me again? host: what proposals would you support to increase the integrity of social security and medicare? max: i'm the only financial
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expert up here. after 35 years as a financial planner i probably have more financial experience of what is going on with our elderly and the abuses in washington than all three opponents combined. i can assure you, number one, we as americans have to put a priority on our retirees. that is the world i worked in, helping retirees and their financial planning. nothing is more important than that. so we do not need to raise taxes at all. what we need to do is to get people who are not represented by these big corporate interests, like sara and susan, who can going to make legislation really in the interests of the people. but they cannot serve two masters, they cannot. this is almost listening to two people talk about reform and politics, they are the essential of the establishment. when they get into office the power either all goes to nancy pelosi and chuck schumer or the republican leadership mitch mcconnell. these two are the faceplates of the republican and democratic
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party. the power does not stay in maine. as an independent, the power will stay here with me. host: lisa savage? lisa: both medicare and social security are currently funded by payroll taxes. payroll taxes that used to be higher, earlier in my lifetime. i think the best way to make those programs last for the people that need them, they are very popular, deeply popular programs in the u.s., would be to have full employment. because it is people who are employed and good for wage jobs with benefits that payinto those programs and their employers match those funds. so it is an employment problem, as i see it. we heard from the occupant of the white house he wanted to suspend payroll taxes, not doing away with them but not having to pay them for a quarter but they
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would come due at the end. i think those are all ideas striking at some - i used to work with and ed tech he said if it were not for social security - my dad died when i was young, and my mother would not have been able to bring us up. those kind of stories about. social security is not just for retirees, it is an important program people depend on. host: sen. collins? sen. collins: social security is the most successful social program we have ever enacted. i agree with lisa on that. and has made the difference between poverty and a reasonable standard of living for so many people, particularly in our state. and growing the economy would help to strengthen social security. i chaired the senate aging committee. my mother is 93. i am so offended by these ads that i would cut this program and i would never do that. we can achieve savings in the
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medicare program, and one way we can do that is by passing a bill i cosponsored that would reduce the cost of prescription drugs. that would save $90 billion dollars per year and medicare costs. we should also put emphasis on preventing illnesses that are so costly, including diabetes, where i chaired that diabetes caucus. so there's a lot we could do to decrease health care costs, and that would help strengthen medicare. host: speaker gideon? spkr. gideon: thank you for the question. keeping promises to our seniors is important, and making sure our seniors can retire and live in dignity and not in poverty is absolutely essential. we have to protect social security and medicare. in the statehouse, we have worked hard to protect our seniors, making sure we restored
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drugs for the elderly programming and making sure we raised the reimbursement rate for people taking care of seniors. unfortunately, when that 2017 tax bill passed, senator collins was the key vote for that. it was a $2 trillion tax cut for corporations and the wealthiest families in america. 91 corporations in america now paid zero dollars in taxes. we have heard president trump say over and over again that now cuts need to be made to social security. whether intentional or not, that is where we are now. in the senate here is what i will do. number one, raise the earnings cap so we can make social security solvent again. number two, get rid of the windfall elimination provision which hurts especially teachers in the state of maine. host: another question from rachel homme from the portland press herald. >> president trump appointed a record number of federal judges. reproductive rights groups voice
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concerns some appointees such as brett kavanaugh, will make decisions that undermine access to health care and legal abortion. do you share this concern and do you think changes are needed to the judicial confirmation process? lisa: it does seem judicial appointments have become more politicized in recent years. i do not actually favor a litmus test for judicial appointments. i would look not only at the record of judge, in terms of the rulings they made, but also at issues of character. part of the design of our system of government was that the judiciary would be a check on the executive and the legislative branches, and would be able to exercise independent thought, and not hew to the literal meaning of the
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constitution as written, but take into account the fact that society has changed, technology has evolved, things may be different. i also feel sticking too closely to precedent is not necessarily a great thing. things change. sometimes past decision may judicially were not good decisions, they were racist. they reflected white supremacy and the to be overturned. those are my views on how i would look at judicial appointments. host: thank you, ms. savage. sen. collins? sen. collins: i agree with lisa that the judicial appointment process has become too political. a perfect example of that as members of the senate announcing their opposition to president trump's nominees before the nominees names were known. that is not what senators are supposed to do. i have applied exactly the same
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standards to all the judicial appointments that i have been called to vote upon. in the supreme court, i supported two of president obama's appointees because they were qualified. they were experienced. they had integrity. they would adhere to the rule of law and to the constitution. i applied that exact same standard to president bush's appointees, and to president trump's appointees. as a result, i have been as even the newspapers have said, remarkably consistent in the approach i have taken. host: speaker gideon? spkr. gideon: this is an incredibly important subject because who was in the judiciary will have an impact on us for generations to come, especially when we think about lifetime appointments. the reality as has been said by others up here is that the judiciary as a separate but equal branch of government, and
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it independent functioning judiciary is so important. unfortunately what we have seen in the past four years as a concerted effort to change the face of the judiciary. we have seen nominees come from this president that are unqualified, and not fit to be judicial nominees, yet sen. collins has voted as of this week for170 of them, some of whom the american bar association said were literally unqualified to become a judge. if i were in the senate i would want to make sure someone first met that low bar of being qualified. additionally, i would also want to make sure they have the temperament. host: mr. linn? max: as a christian with all of us here tonight, one that i can promise all of you, and the controversy is the abortion issue. i want to talk to sara gideon supporters. even though even though abortion
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may not be right in my family, under no condition would i impose laws or conditions that would hamper a woman's right to choose. that is between her doctor and her god. the federal government has no business in it. number two, i would never have voted to confirm brett kavanaugh. what in the world was susan collins thinking? she talks about being a uniter but that was so divisive. it was a wrong move on her part. i assure you we need to focus on our appointments that are not creating so much controversy. we need to bring america together instead of pulling it apart. susan collins continues to talk about stuff up. that just is not true in her voting record, nor sara's. these women are spenders. the establishment will be bankrupt. host: ms. collins? sen. collins: i have been mentored by - to sara, she has been critical
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of my support for justice kavanaugh. what she have voted for justice roberts? spkr. gideon: i believe i would have to fully study to be able to answer that question. sen. collins: she is ducking the question. host: we have come to the end of our hour and we have time for closing statements with each candidate getting one minute. first lisa savage lisa: thank you everyone for being here tonight. right choice voting is a game changer. of course i'm in this race, running for medicare for all. demilitarized green new deal. we did not talk about our wars or the federal budget for the pentagon much tonight. if the budget where the discretionary federal budget were a pie chart, the pentagon gets more than half. it gets $750 plus billion dollars. and nuclear weapons are hidden
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in the energy department. the v.a. is its own budget line. i want to fully fund the v.a. but to really reckon that true cost of militarism in this country, no one has asked the question, how are you going to pay for this? some have noted corporations paid zero taxes. as a schoolteacher i have been paid 28%. host: max linn? max: susan and sara raising a hundred million dollars. the independents do not have a chance in the system. they have been talking about how much they want to save and get money out of politics and they are the essence of politics. her ppp program has hurt americans. i am the only financial expert up here and i'm for a student loan forgiveness, people direct
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bailout is key, total student loan forgiveness, number one. number two, i'm asking for a $5,000 post pandemic lay for all maine families. they want to bail out big business and if any bailouts are coming, it is going to be the people and the $500 billion for small businesses. susan and sara are not for america. it is time for americans to wake up. host: your time is up. spkr. gideon: thank you for tuning in. when i made a decision to run for local town office, it was because i believe a book service as a way to improve the lives of people around you. that is why in the statehouse i worked so hard to bring republicans, democrats and independents together, to fight the opioid crisis and saved lives. to lift people out of poverty. to tackle the climate crisis. to lower the cost of prescription drugs, and to make sure we were
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expanding health care including reproductive health care. that is not what we are seeing in washington where sen. collins does not stand up to donald trump and votes with him 94% of the time and allows mitch mcconnell to block progress on almost any issue. in the senate i will be a champion for maine, fight for the issues i have fought for in the statehouse, and never forget where i come from or who i represent. host: an susan collins? sen. collins: 19 years ago, our nation suffered its worst terrorist attack. nearly 3000 people lost their lives, including hundreds of police and firefighters. i am so proud to have the support of maine's first responders, who work so hard to care for our communities. on that terrible day, i joined senators on the capitol steps where we sang, 'god bless america', with a sense of unity, resolve, and patriotism.
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today we are confronting enormous challenges. we need to remember we are not republicans, democrats or independents first. we are americans. i was raised in caribou, where my parents taught me to act with integrity and work hard. those are the values that have guided me, as i have served you in the united states senate. i have always put the people of maine first, and i always will. host: that wraps up our decision made u.s. senate debate. thanks to the candidates into our colleagues at bangor daily news and the portland press herald and have a good night, everyone. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] >> president donald trump and former vice president joe biden are set to debate tuesday,
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september between night. president trump: biden supports cutting police funding and has threaded to -- threatened to ed bail. d support of the anti-police portland district attorney for his support of releasing vandals and criminals without charge. mr. biden: he lied the american people. he lied to the threat posed to the country for months. he had information, he knew how dangerous it was, and while this deadly disease ripped through our nation, he failed to do his job on purpose. it was a life-and-death betrayal of the american people. >> watch live coverage of the first presidential debate, tuesday september between ninth, on c-span at 9 p.m. eastern and watch all of c-span's debate coverage at find all past presidential and vice presidential debates from
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c-span's video library and a link to our campaign 2020 website with campaign videos, candidate information, and election results. go to or listen live on the sea -- free c-span radio app. c-span -- or unfiltered view of politics. >> live event coverage on monday starts at noon eastern as the house subcommittee chaired by gerald connolly examines u.s. postal service operations in the lead up to election day. the house is back for legislative business begin at 2 p.m. eastern on c-span. on c-span two, the washington post's hosted discussion on the evangelical vote in the 2020 election begin at 1 p.m. eastern . after that, a look at how technology is helping the black lives matter movement and other citizen activist groups. the senate comes in at 3 p.m. to continue work on nomination for u.s. district judges in california and illinois.
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ongoing mobile pandemic and many doing online learning, c-span provides students with a platform to engage in a national conversation. we are asking middle and high school students to produce a five to six minute document or he exploring the issues they most want a president and new congress to address in 21. >> [indiscernible] >> when youth are given the opportunity and skills to become informed voters and engaged citizens -- [indiscernible] >> children who were born here but whose parents illegally migrated here, the immigration
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system failed many people. >> we are giving away 120. -- $100,000 in cash prizes. -- deadline is [indiscernible] to oure information, go website, >> civil rights advocates and public safety experts tell a house panel about how to ensure a safe and fair election in november amid the coronavirus. they highlighted voter compliance with cdc guidelines, concerns about voter suppression, and recommended mail in balloting and early voting as ways to keep voters safe.


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