Schumer, Pinion debate in U.S. Senate contest on Spectrum News/NY1 – Spectrum News

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As he debated his Republican opponent Joe Pinion Sunday night, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer defended his record as a top Democrat in Washington. 
"In the last two years under my leadership, the Senate has had the most productive session in decades," Schumer said. 
But while Schumer has long pointed to his leadership role as beneficial to New York, Pinion knocked the longtime lawmaker’s resume as falling short for New Yorkers. 
"He’s a failed senator," Pinion said. "He’s failed the people of this state on multiple occasions." 
Schumer and Pinion faced each other in the exclusive Spectrum News 1 and NY1 debate, the only forum expected in the race for the seat this year as the economy remains a top concern for voters. 
"COVID did not cause the inflation," Pinion said. "The response to COVID caused the inflation – the printing of money, $6 trillion worth to oppose that virus of foreign origin and we still have not held them accountable." 
Pinion, a former anchor on the conservative cable channel Newsmax, is trying to pull off a political upset and become the first Black man to represent New York in the U.S. Senate. Schumer, who has held the seat since 1999, has largely focused on his accomplishments and pointed to the power he has wielded in Washington. 
That has included the flurry of legislative activity in Congress this summer, dealing with high-tech manufacturing to climate change and health care. 
"Starting next year, this coming year, the most a person can pay for prescription drugs is $2,000," Schumer said. "That’s a real cap, it’s going to reduce inflation."
The debate also comes against the backdrop of a heated political season. Both candidates condemned violent rhetoric in politics in the wake of the attack on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband at their home in San Francisco.
But Pinion charged Schumer should lower his own rhetoric, referencing the senator’s warning to conservative justices on the Supreme Court would reap the whirlwind if they overturn Roe v. Wade. 
"Donald Trump is not running for U.S. Senate in New York," Pinion said. "You are, sir. You are the one who had that that rhetoric and do you apologize to Justice Kavanagh?"
Responded Schumer, "The words I used that day were probably the wrong choice of words. I’ve said that then and I’ll say that now."
And the Supreme ultimately did overturn Roe v. Wade this summer. Pinion does not think there should be a national ban on abortion as some Republicans have proposed. 
"I do not support a national ban because the Supreme Court just said it was a matter for the states," Pinion said. "I don’t think we should have patience for politicians who pass legislation knowing it violates that law." 
Schumer, meanwhile, said a return to the abortion rights under Roe are needed. 
"I support Roe and all the protections that have been written into it and that was the law before the Supreme Court decision," he said. 
Schumer faces the possibility of losing a Democratic majority in the closely divided U.S. Senate this year, and with it the loss of the majority leader post. 


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