Romney, Wilson make their case for U.S. Senate seat in televised debate


CEDAR CITY (News4Utah) – Both major party candidates for Utah’s U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Orrin Hatch made their case to voters at Southern Utah University Tuesday night.

It was overall a polite discussion of issues, as Mitt Romney and Jenny Wilson met together and debated on campus.  That’s not to say things didn’t get testy.

Some of the friction came from a question on gun control. Romney told the crowd it should be as hands-off as possible. 

Wilson fired back saying, “We’re going to play multiple choice Mitt.  Because you’ve said one thing when you went to run for governor, another thing as governor, then you went off to run for president, and now you’re seeking to serve us in the US Senate from Utah. I don’t know if it’s A B C or D, but I see that it does change.”

Romney said in response, that’s just not the case, “I’m just going to point out, I ran for president twice. Both times I said I would not favor new federal gun legislation, that continues to be my position.”

Talk inevitably turned to President Trump with Wilson saying she was concerned.  

“I believe strongly this should be a limited presidency and to restore the beautiful nation we have,” said Wilson.  

Romney conceded that the president has said some things the nominee doesn’t agree with.

“There are times when I think the president has said some things which I think are divisive or racist or misogynistic. And I will speak out about those things.”

But Romney said President Trump has done a lot of good for Utah as well. Later at a press conference, Romney said he will speak up for Trump when Romney feels the president is right, but. ..”If and when he ever says or does something I think is divisive or misogynistic, or, uh, anti-immigrant or racist, I’ll call him out on that.”

Wilson, for her part, had praise for Romney, “He was gracious to point out that we had worked together. Those days…they’re still embedded in my heart basically.”

If you missed the debate, you can watch it via the player below.  

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Glen Mills

Chief Political Correspondent

For this Beetdigger and Ute it’s an honor to be doing what he loves in his home state! Glen is an award-winning journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team in June 2013. You can catch him anchoring ABC4 News at 5 and 6, Monday through Friday. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent, keeping you up to date on issues that impact your life at the city, state and national level. His political reports run throughout the week, and he hosts Inside Utah Politics, Sunday mornings at 8. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...