Echoing assaults from Republican strategists, Freitas sought to undermine Spanberger in the course of the evening by arguing she is not average ample for the district, noting her help for selected gun-regulate steps and help for raising the federal minimum wage, amid other things.
“I really do not assume this is a file of moderation,” mentioned Freitas, a previous Green Beret. “What we have to have in the 7th District is not as considerably left compared to right but sensible compared to unreasonable. We know we want to decreased taxes in purchase to support men and women and firms. We know we need to have to get our regulatory atmosphere under control.”
The candidates are locked in 1 of the most competitive congressional races in Virginia, in a district that President Trump received by around 7 percentage points in 2016 but that political analysts imagine leans slightly in Spanberger’s favor. Spanberger, a former CIA officer and Postal Support investigator, flipped the seat blue in 2018 thanks in massive portion to voters in suburban Henrico and Chesterfield counties, who are predicted to vote in large figures for the Democratic ticket once more.
The Tuesday night time forum-discussion was hosted by VPM, Virginia’s PBS affiliate, and moderated by Robert Costa, a political correspondent for The Washington Put up and also a taking care of editor of Washington Week.
Costa kicked off the night time inquiring the candidates no matter whether yet another stimulus deal is needed as the nation faces a probably surge in coronavirus situations as winter nears — a subject that would dominate much of the debate.
Freitas, a rigid fiscal conservative, criticized the Democrats’ $3 trillion Heroes Act, stating extra qualified support is necessary. But Spanberger was fast to notice that she voted towards the Democrats’ bill, describing it as a person example of a time she broke with celebration leadership. She explained much more Paycheck Security Plan funding, unemployment advantages and immediate reduction to stave off a housing crisis are needed.
“I have been functioning aggressively to make certain we can provide that reduction,” Spanberger explained, “and have been standing up to my occasion when partisan politics was delaying these negotiations that would bring it dwelling.”
Freitas said that even with the Trump administration’s “pretty good” reaction to the pandemic, methods should really be greater allotted to target on the most at-possibility men and women, these kinds of as those people in long-phrase care amenities. He claimed he would oppose shutting down firms through a spike in scenarios.
“Too numerous of my Democratic colleagues don’t have an understanding of that you cannot tax what you have not allowed men and women to generate,” he mentioned.
The candidates differed drastically around workers’ positive aspects and wages.
Spanberger explained she supports phasing in a federal minimal wage increase up to $15 for every hour, when also noting Freitas voted versus workplace protections for pregnant women of all ages in the Virginia Standard Assembly. Freitas opposes an improve in the federal minimal wage, arguing it would hurt tiny enterprises by making it more highly-priced to seek the services of individuals. He argued fewer men and women would be ready to get a position as a consequence.
“It’s astounding to me that we’re telling small-business house owners that are combating to offer economic possibilities that now we’re going to double the cost of using the services of someone to get that original task,” he stated.
“This is an concern of income inequality,” Spanberger retorted. “This is not an concern of coming into the workforce.”
The candidates also offered widely unique sights on overall health treatment, as Spanberger went immediately after Freitas for voting versus the state’s Medicaid expansion in 2018 and for supporting the repeal of the Reasonably priced Treatment Act. Freitas denied seeking to intestine protections for people with preexisting ailments.
“There is so a lot rhetoric [from Republicans]: ‘Well we’ll just secure people today with preexisting conditions.’ There is 1 monthly bill that does that. It is the ACA,” Spanberger mentioned.
Spanberger supports a general public possibility, which Freitas argued will trigger taxes and insurance prices for non-public designs to go up.
On policing, Freitas pointed to endorsements from legislation enforcement teams to argue he is a more robust backer of legislation enforcement. But Spanberger, noting the two she and her father were being federal law enforcement brokers, stated she has voted to raise funding for law enforcement coaching and also police staffing by way of federal grants. She supports banning chokeholds, no-knock warrants and other accountability measures in the Justice in Policing Act, some of which Freitas has reported he thinks go also significantly.
But Spanberger and Freitas agreed on other items, both of those opposing Democratic solutions to expand the selection of justices on the Supreme Courtroom and expressing they would prioritize the enlargement of rural broadband, the latter of which has been a main concentration for Spanberger in her first time period.
They will interact in yet another forum Thursday hosted by the Richmond 1st Club.