From Detroit, Michigan –
In a final pitch before voters go to the polls in this key state on Tuesday, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders delved deeply into issues near and dear to the state of Michigan and the industrial Midwest, pointedly exchanging attacks over who had the better record on creating and saving jobs.
“I voted to save the auto industry, he voted against,” Clinton said to rising applause.
“I think that makes a pretty big difference,” Clinton said in one particularly spicy exchange that went to the heart of their differences in this Democratic Party campaign.
“Some of your friends destroyed this economy,” Sanders shot back, once more going after Clinton’s support for the Wall Street bailout.
“Your story is for voting for every disastrous trade agreement,” Sanders added, as he once more argued that past trade deals had siphoned American jobs overseas.
“Secretary Clinton says I’m a one issue person,” Sanders said. “My one issue is trying to rebuild a disappearing middle class.”
Whether it was on the auto bailout or other programs, Clinton again repeatedly cast herself as the candidate who stood more closely with President Obama as he tried to push economic plans through the Congress.
“I went with Barack Obama – you did not,” Clinton said sharply.
The debate began with a focus on the water troubles in Flint, which brought this debate to that city north of Detroit.
Sanders started the proceedings by calling for the resignation of Governor Rick Snyder of Michigan over the water debacle.
“The Governor of this state should understand that his dereliction of duty on this issue was irresponsible; he should resign,” Sanders said to cheers.
“I agree,” Clinton said swiftly. “The Governor should resign or be recalled,” as the start of this debate sounded more like a Democratic Party rally in a race for Governor in Michigan, than a debate for President.
The debate was capped by a question for both Clinton and Sanders about how they would handle Donald Trump, if he is the GOP nominee.
Clinton and Sanders will debate again on Wednesday in Miami.