GOP senate candidates debate in South Ga.


ADEL, Ga. - Republican candidates who want to be your next U.S. senator gathered in Adel, in South Georgia, for the first in a series of debates. Channel 2 Action News was the only Atlanta television station there to hear their top issues.

Seven of the eight candidates turned up for the debate, but there wasn't much debating going on here.

They all agreed something needs to be done to fix the economy, get rid of the deficit, and end Obamacare.

While they also agreed on what their top priorities are, they did try to set themselves apart.

"I'm very concerned about the American dream. I'm the only one up here who's cut his own office expenses over a million dollars. I'm the only one who's cut federal spending and negotiated with Democrats and got it signed by Barack Obama $3 billion," said Rep. Jack Kingston.

"Everybody talks about issues, but I am the true conservative this race and I hope I painted that picture here in Adel. It's absolutely imperative that people look at the voting records and who we are," Rep. Paul Broun.

Former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel pushed for a change in Washington.

"Results matter. And by any measure the results we've been getting out of congress are poor. And the three congressman, they've been there for 42 years combined, they're not getting the job done," Handel said.

And political newcomer David Perdue pushed his business background.

"We need leadership up there. With only 10 people in the United States senate with business experience, they need somebody up there that's actually lived and worked outside the United States and survived for 41 years in a business career," Perdue said.

The only absence from the debate, congressman Phil Gingrey.

There are four democrats in the race, including Steen Miles and Michelle Nunn.

At this point, they're not planning their own debates, but state Democratic leaders said they're ready for any of the Republican candidates.

"We'll have the opportunity to bring the state together and our people together in this race. I think they'll be defining issues to do that. We look forward to the 2014 election," said former state Rep. Dubose Porter. Porter is now chairman of the Democratic Party of Georgia.

The state Republican party is sponsoring seven senate debates. The next one is Feb. 1 in Kennesaw.