As we head into the fourth Democrat Presidential debate tonight, it will be interesting to watch the different ways that Democrat Senate Candidates Cal Cunningham and Erica Smith approach the spectacle. For example, Smith live-tweets
them, while Cunningham remains silent. Since Cunningham isn't very proactive about sharing his views, here are some questions the media should ask him ahead of tonight's debate:
- Erica Smith has endorsed Kamala Harris for president. While Cunningham has held off on endorsing a specific candidate so far, will he commit to supporting whoever wins the Democratic nomination for president?
- Erica Smith says she would vote against Bernie Sanders' Medicare-for-All bill if it was the only option. Does Cunningham agree?
- Erica Smith says she "unequivocally supports the Green New Deal." Would Cunningham vote for it?
- A majority of the Democratic candidates running for president support taxpayer funded health care for illegal immigrants. Does Cal Cunningham agree?
- A majority of Democratic candidates running for president support decriminalizing illegal immigration. Does Cal Cunningham agree?
- Does Cal Cunningham agree with some of the Democrats running for president that law abiding gun owners should have their firearms confiscated?
- Cal Cunningham claims he wants to be an independent Senator who will put partisan politics aside and do what's best for North Carolinians. Can he provide an example of something he agrees with President Trump on?
- In June, Cunningham called the ideas coming out of the Democratic primary "refreshing." Which ideas was he referring to?
Members of the media have been critical of Cunningham for not taking stances on key issues.
Cunningham "Is Distinguished By Having No Distinguishing Politics." "Cunningham, who lost a primary for Senate in 2010, is distinguished by having no distinguishing politics, precisely the type of candidate Washington consultants like to build assembly-line ads around. You know the kind: two-minute biographical portraits with lots of aerial shots that decry "corruption," followed by ads with the family in the driveway talking about their state's values. (A. Chavez, R. Grim, & A. Lacy, "Progressive Candidates Are Carving A Path To The Senate In 2020 - No Thanks To Chuck Schumer," The Intercept, 8/15/19)
Cunningham Has Been "Vague In His Answers, Even After Repeated Questions." "But on other issues, he (Cunningham) was vague in his answers, even after repeated questions. Immigration is one, specifically whether undocumented immigrants should receive health care under a government-run plan.The Green New Deal is another. ("A Conversation With Cal Cunningham," WFAE, 10/25/19)
You may recall that Cunningham began his Senate campaign in June, he told Spectrum News' Tim Boyum that he finds the ideas coming out of the Democratic presidential primary to be "refreshing
." Since then, Cunningham has been hiding in a "windowless basement
" on the orders of Chuck Schumer, and has not elaborated on his statement. Cunningham's strategy seems to be backfiring as Erica Smith's socialist platform has propelled her to a lead
in the U.S. Senate Democrat primary.
Cunningham's substance-less campaign should come as no surprise to political observers in North Carolina, as he was criticized by Democrats as being a "walking talking point" during his failed 2010 Senate campaign.
- Contact: Jeff Hauser