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Sparks fly between U.S House candidates Rep. Don Young, Alyse Galvin in Debate for the State

Published: Oct. 23, 2020 at 7:11 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) -Rep. Don Young and Alyse Galvin took the stage for the first Debate for the State Thursday night at Alaska Public Media.

Candidates gave their opinion on issues including mining, COVID-19 response, climate change, mental health and addiction programs and the Second Amendment.

Viewers from around the state also got to ask questions online by posting comments on Facebook and Twitter using #Debateforthestate.

The debate was reminiscent of when the candidates last went head-to-head two years ago for Galvin’s first run for House representative. Things often got heated and personal between them then and that did not change Thursday.

The candidates were able to ask questions of each other. Young started by asking “What’s your stand on the Second Amendment, Alice?”

Galvin responded to the question, “My name is Alyse Galvin and I fully support to protecting the Second Amendment right.”

When addressing COVID-19 response, Galvin critiqued Young for not voting on CARES Act motions.

“Don, when the CARES Act was being crafted, you couldn’t even be bothered to vote,” Galvin said. “Instead, you were in Palmer talking about the ‘Beer Virus,’ with a whole lot of seniors, and saying how you didn’t want to be in D.C. quote ‘with that bunch of monkeys.’”

“I’ve voted 30,000 times. I have missed some vote,” Young responded. “I’m actually 5,000 miles one way, and if you do get elected, God help us, but if you do get elected, you’ll find out traveling back and forth is the hardest part of the job.

"30,000 times, you haven’t voted once. Keep that in mind. You say you’re going to be there. If you’re going to be there, then you’re not going to be here.”

Young used President Donald Trump’s language in parts of the debate, including calling former Vice President Joe Biden “Sleepy Joe.” Galvin refrenced the first presidential debate, where Trump frequently talked over or interrupted Biden, when Young interrupted Galvin.

Galvin began, “You’ve missed 14% of the votes during your career -"

“In 48 years,” Young said.

“We’re not like other national forums, we’re respectful here,” Galvin responded. “We’re civil here.”

The two candidates did find some common ground; both agreed on developing alternative energy sources to help rural economies around the state. Both have favored protecting Second Amendment rights.

Thursday’s debate is part of a partnership with Alaska’s News Source and Alaska Public Media. There will be another Debate for the State on Friday at 7 p.m. between U.S. Senate candidates Sen. Dan Sullivan and Dr. Al Gross. Watch the full debate on Alaska’s News Source’s Facebook and tweet or comment your questions using #Debateforthestate.

Editor’s note: this article has been updated with more information about the debate.

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