Congressional candidates face off in CWLI forum - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Congressional candidates face off in CWLI forum

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

We are just days away from the state primary election and Monday, the public got a chance to hear from some of the candidates. 

One of the hotly contested races this election is for the District 3 house seat—As Weston Wamp tries again to unseat incumbent Chuck Fleischmann. Democratic candidate Mary Headrick will again face the winner in November. 

All three were on stage together with Channel 3's Cindy Sexton as moderator as they answered questions prepared by the Chattanooga Women's Leadership Institute.

The organization teamed up with UTC to put on the event.

Topics ranged from heath care to the locks at Chickamauga Dam and women in the business world.  

Hundreds of east Tennessee voters filled the auditorium on UTC’s campus to hear from candidates vying for the District 3 congressional seat.

It’s not the first time the trio have faced off, in fact, they went head to head in the same race three years ago.

“We want to hear from the candidates and hear their views on all the issues specifically that we’ve asked them about. But yes, with all the other debates and forums that have gone on around town, it’s definitely appealing,” Chattanooga Women’s Leadership Institute Managing Director Lesley Berryhill said.

For the second time, Wamp is trying to unseat Fleischmann and the race is one that’s caught the attention of many. The senior politician has been criticized over his negative campaign ads against his opponent.

“When candidates run, sometimes they go out and say things they later regret. We’re just reminding people of east Tennessee, who will be voting in this primary, of some of his positions,” Fleischmann said.

Many believe younger generations connect to Wamp because of his age, but regardless of the reason Wamp says his campaign would rather focus on solutions than political back and forth.

“I hear everywhere I go that people are sick and tired and fed up with the negative politics. We’ve tried to be about solutions and talk about opportunities we can find common ground as a country and we’re going to keep doing that and I hope voters will reward it,” Wamp said.

Dr. Mary Headrick is running opposed on the Democratic ticket and brings a fresh perspective through her heath care background—A topic many voters are taking seriously at the polls.

“In Chattanooga, 61 different commercial plans to choose from are on the exchange. All it has done is given us a safety standard for us on the exchange by saying what a health plan has to contain,” Headrick said.

Early voting runs through August 2nd.

The Tennessee Primary Election is August 7th.

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