JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - U.S. Senate candidates Roger Wicker and
Ronnie Musgrove acknowledged tonight that the advertising in their
high-stakes contest is negative -- but neither took responsibility
for the harsh tone.
During a debate televised statewide, they said national party
committees are pumping big money into the race to fill Trent Lott's
old seat, and the committees' spending is beyond their control.
The candidates attacked each other's records in office, and each
said the other is fiscally irresponsible. They agreed on several
issues, such as their opposition to the financial bailout approved
by the U.S. House and Senate.
Both said country needs a new energy policy. Wicker said he
wants to expand domestic oil drilling, but Musgrove provided few
specific ideas about how to bring down the price of gasoline.
The election is November 4. The winner will fill the final four
years of a six-year term.
When Lott retired last December to become a lobbyist, Governor
Haley Barbour moved Wicker from the U.S. House to temporarily fill
the Senate seat. Musgrove was a one-term governor who was defeated
by Barbour in 2003.