Maine Senate candidates participate in third debate
BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Maine’s U.S. Senate candidates met for their third televised debate Thursday.
Republican incumbent Susan Collins, Democratic challenger Sara Gideon, Green Party candidate Lisa Savage, and Independent Max Linn all took the debate stage.
The debate took place in the Augusta Civic Center without an audience.
Collins and Gideon clashed particularly on the topic of leadership and the coronavirus pandemic.
Collins argued that House Speaker Gideon has done little since the legislature adjourned in March.
“Maine has the second lowest rate of COVID infection in this country, and at the same time Maine also on an index of 0 to 100, is rated a 93 in terms economic recovery, neither of things is an accident," said Gideon. "They are about the leadership that has happened here.”
“Leadership is what I’ve shown in dealing with his pandemic," Collins said. “I came up with the with the concept of the Paycheck Protection Program. It is the most successful part of our response to the economic devastation by the coronavirus.”
Some economists argue that the $600 weekly federal boost to unemployment benefits, which has now expired, had a greater impact.
Regardless, Collins says forgivable PPP loans have aided three out of four small businesses in Maine.
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