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Gubernatorial Candidates Go Head-To-Head In Second Official Debate

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With five weeks until Election Day, Connecticut's gubernatorial candidates have schedules jam-packed with campaign events, including debates.

On Tuesday, Democratic incumbent Dannel Malloy and his challenger, Republican Tomorrow Foley, squared off in their second official debate this season.

Not long into the debate, Foley laid on the zingers. "Listen, the governor, sometimes I wonder if he's living in the same state," he said. Later on, Foley said, "I don't know why anybody should trust you now."

Malloy wasn't distracted, and he focused on his sticking points.

"So let's be very clear: We have a long way to go in our state, but we are making progress and for anyone to deny that we're making progress denies who we are in Connecticut--strong-hearted, smart people who make good investments in the future when they're well-led," Malloy said.

The two spun many debate questions into answers concerning the economy, using a lot of time to talk about government spending and taxes.

Foley said, "I will hold spending flat for two years. I've also promised to help stimulate the economy by reducing the state sales tax by half a percent and I'm going to reduce the car tax."

"I don't believe there will be a budget deficit and I pledge that they're won't be one. I also pledge that there will not be a tax increase. That's not a promise I made four years ago," said Malloy.

Another talker: education. Malloy bashed Foley's plan to give schools an A through F grade and his opponent's calls to give parents a choice of where to send students.

"Name one good school in Connecticut, one good public school in Connecticut, that is not already filled. This is a false promise being made by someone who really does not understand how hard it is to turn education around ," Malloy said.

Foley had a counter-claim against the governor.

"You've alienated a lot of people who we rely on to educate our young people. We simply have to support them more, make them part of the process," said Foley.

The candidates also answered questions about gambling, gun control and pensions.

When asked about marijuana, Malloy and Foley admitted they had tried it before, but both said they would not support its legalization.

Various polls taken before Tuesday's debate say Foley has a slight edge over the governor.

More debates are scheduled, including one hosted by FOX CT and the Hartford Courant. It's at 7 p.m. on Thursday at the University of Connecticut.

The University of Saint Joseph hosted Tuesday's debate.

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