COLUMBIA, Mo. – The first Missouri Gubernatorial debate is held after being postponed because of Governor Paron’s positive COVID-19 diagnosis in September.
Voters heard from Republican incumbent Mike Parson, Democrat Nicole Galloway, Libertarian Rik Combs, and Green Party candidate Jerome Bauer.
A big topic of the debate was the pandemic, where Galloway took jabs at the Governor’s response.
“We need a complete reset on our coronavirus strategy,” says Galloway.
“We went from two thousand tests a week, to over a hundred and twenty-five thousand today,” says Parson.
Education was another big topic.
“Schools made a tough decision earlier this spring to shut down, and Governor Parsons did little planning to help them reopen this fall,” says Galloway.
“75 percent of the kids in our state are in class or a hybrid version because of the actions we took this summer to make sure these kids were safe to go back to school,” says Parson.
They also took jabs, blaming each other for increasing crime in the state.
“Her liberal agenda is the cause of this problem from decade to decade to decade,” claims Parson.
“I know what he’s referencing. I don’t support defunding the police. He knows that. The only person on this stage that has defunded the police is Governor Parson,” Galloway responds.
They also touched on how they would improve race relations amid the Black Lives Matter Movement.
“I have put forward a comprehensive criminal justice and policing reform package that can build trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve,” says Galloway.
“We are doing reforms. The POST commission just did some reforms across the state of Missouri. Black lives matter. All lives matter in this state,” says Parson.
Before the debate, we spoke with Krista Stark, the Chair of Southwest Missouri Democrats, and Nick Myers, the Chair of the Newton County Republican Committee, to hear why they think their candidate is right for Missouri.
“This election isn’t about us feeling that he hasn’t done his job. It is like us feeling like he has not done his job, and feeling like we know how qualified she is to serve the public, and so we just feel like there isn’t even any competition,” says Stark.
“Four years ago he was elected lieutenant governor with the greatest majority of anybody who had ever been elected lieutenant governor. So, I feel like the people of Missouri know the governor and that he’s done a good job,” says Myers.