KSDebate – Opening Remarks

Moderator, Darren Dedo, KSN: Good evening and welcome to the KSN studios here in Wichita for the Kansas Senate Debate. I am Darren Dedo with KSN News. I will be your moderator tonight for the debate between Senator Pat Roberts and his independent challenger, Greg Orman. As we get started, here are tonight’s rules.

Each candidate will have a minute and a half for opening remarks. Each person will have one minute to answer each question from our panel as well as a 30-second rebuttal. We’ll end with a minute and a half closing remarks from each of the candidates.

Our panel consists of our media partners for tonight’s debate. We have Brian Lowry from The Wichita Eagle, Dr. Bob Beatty from KSNT in Topeka, Tim Carpenter from the Topeka Capital-Journal and Craig Andres from KSN News.

Candidates were not given the questions or topics before tonight’s debate. We also want to you to follow along and send us questions to #KSDebate. We’ll be picking some of those questions tonight to ask the candidates.

Let’s get started right now with our opening remarks. We did do a coin toss before the debate. Mr. Orman will get to go first before the first question from our panel.

Mr. Orman, the floor is yours.

Greg Orman (I): Thank you and thank you to everyone at home who is watching tonight. Washington’s broken. We all know it. We’re sending the worst of both parties there. Bitter partisans who care more about pleasing the extremists and the special interests in their own party than they do about solving problems. They draw childish lines in the sand and refuse to cooperate. As a result, inaction has replaced leadership in solving our most pressing issues.

And we have serious issues to solve, from health care and higher education affordability to stagnant wages to living within our means as a country. I am concerned that if we don’t start solving these problems, our standard of living, our status in the world and the very existence of the middle class in America is at risk. I have tried both parties, and like a lot of Kansans, I’ve been disappointed.

Tonight, Senator Roberts is going to tell you that President Obama and Harry Reid are the reason why Washington is such a mess. You know what? He is half right. But the other half of the mess? Mitch McConnell and Pat Roberts. The truth is, both parties are more interested in playing games than solving problems and both parties are failing Kansas. That’s why I am running for the U.S. Senate as an Independent. I am a fiscally responsible man who wants to go to Washington and focus on solutions, not party games. I’ll embrace the best ideas, wherever they come from so we can start solving problems again for the American people.

Darren Dedo: Senator Roberts?

Pat Roberts (R): America is at a crossroads. We are at a tipping point. And Kansans know they have a choice to make. They can make a choice between a trusted conservative Republican with integrity, or my opponent, who is a liberal Democrat who still won’t shoot straight with Kansas voters. It is pretty simple, folks. What this boils down to is, a vote for Pat Roberts is a vote for a Republican majority in the Senate. End the Harry Reid agenda. End the gridlock and the Obama-Reid agenda. Replace what they have stood for with real jobs, real growth. My opponent cannot stand up to the Obama-Reid agenda. After all, he is a Democrat. He ran against me as a Democrat in 2008 and he gave contributions — $174,000 — to Hillary Clinton, to Barack Obama, and yes, even to Harry Reid. So, by deed and by word and by campaign contributions, he cannot stand up to the Reid-Obama agenda.

Now, it is so much more about this election than me. That’s why we have had all members of the Republican party come and endorse me. Because they know the number one thing is to get a Republican majority in the United States Senate to end the gridlock and stop the Obama-Reid agenda.

Kansas Senate Debate Question by Question

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