The two candidates for California's open U.S. Senate seat clashed in a series of pointed exchanges Wednesday, highlighting the stakes in their only televised debate.
You can watch the archived video of the debate below:
State Attorney General Kamala Harris and Rep. Loretta Sanchez, both Democrats, dueled over their credentials and records on issues from crime to terrorism.
Sanchez depicted Harris as unprepared for Washington, while she has spent years on Capitol Hill specializing in military affairs. She argued that Harris is untrustworthy, a politicians who "says one thing and does another."
Harris pointed out that Sanchez has compiled one of the worst attendance records in Congress, but Sanchez argued she had never missed a crucial vote. Harris also criticized Sanchez over comments in December, when she suggested that as many as two of 10 Muslims would engage in terrorism to establish a strict Islamic state.
Sanchez, from Orange County, later issued a statement saying the estimate did not reflect her views on the Muslim community in America, and most Muslims around the world are committed to peace.
For Sanchez, a 10-term member of the House, the matchup represents perhaps her best chance to slow front-runner Harris, who has been endorsed by President Barack Obama and has never trailed in polling or fundraising.
The contest came just a few days before mail-in ballots are distributed to millions of voters.
The race marks the first time in the modern era that a Republican will not appear on the Senate ballot, the Democrats-only runoff created by the state's unusual primary election rules.
The TV audience is expected to be relatively small, and the debate will be competing for viewers with the playoff game between the San Francisco Giants and the New York Mets.
With Harris the favorite of Obama, Gov. Jerry Brown and the state Democratic establishment, Sanchez has been trying to stitch together an unusual coalition that includes Republicans, Hispanics, Democrats and independents.
As fellow Democrats, the two candidates share similar positions on many issues, including the $15 minimum wage, climate change and immigration reform. But the debate is likely to highlight their differences.
Sanchez has faulted Harris for increases in violent crime around the state, and argues that the career prosecutor lacks experience in national security. The congresswoman serves on the Homeland Security and Armed Services committees in the House.
Harris' campaign has criticized Sanchez for her spotty voting record in the House.
The campaign has been notable for its lack of visibility.
Typically, TV commercials would begin circulating widely at this stage in a high-profile campaign. They have not.
Sanchez, in particular, has struggled to raise money and it appears unlikely she will be able to finance the kind of advertising barrage typically needed to shift voters' views.
Harris, in her second term, has run statewide campaigns and is better known.
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