Candidates in Special Senate Election to Debate

By: Jon Kalahar Email
By: Jon Kalahar Email

The debate between Roger Wicker and Ronnie Musgrove takes place Friday night. And you can bet the Wall Street financial crisis will be a hot topic.

But with Sen. Wicker voting against the plan that passed Wednesday, what might the candidates do differently to help the country out of the economic downturn.

President Bush has warned of a financial meltdown across the country if a bailout plan wasn't passed soon by Congress. Earlier in the week, the stock exchanges dipped in a record loss.

But what about here in Mississippi? Roger Wicker voted against the bailout Wednesday.

"The people of Mississippi are very much opposed to this," said Wicker.

Wicker said he can't see writing a $850 billion check to bail out Wall Street.

"I think there are free market approaches that get to the root of the problem, rather than this sort of band aid," Wicker said.

Wicker was in the minority in the Senate. The plan passed 74 to 25. But his challenger also sees problems with the plan.

"Governor Musgrove stands with the people of Mississippi who are fundamentally opposed to a bailout package aimed at one institution like Wall Street," said Adam Bozzi of the Musgrove for Senate campaign.

Bozzi says the former governor wants more accountability in the treasury department and an investigation into possible fraud and abuses among Wall Street CEOs which could have caused this.

"It's making sure the taxpayers get the best return, because yes, they're the people who are going to be on the line one way or the other," Bozzi.

Wicker sees all this going back to our country's dependence on foreign oil.

"If people hadn't been having to pay so much for gas prices at the pumps and their power prices at home," said Wicker. "I think a lot of them would not be in financial straights with their mortgages."

The House is expected to vote on the bailout plan Friday. Representatives failed to pass the first plan which led to the record drop on Wall Street.

The debate will air live on WTOK-TV at 7 p.m.

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