Cicilline and Gemma Debate for 2nd time - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Cicilline and Gemma Debate for 2nd time

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Congressman David Cicilline and his primary challenger Anthony Gemma squared off in the second of three-scheduled debates Tuesday night.

Taking as much time to bicker between each other, as they did, to talk about the issues.

Even though the two were seated next to each other, they barely made eye contact, and didn't shake hands.

It's evidence that ABC6 Chief Political Analyst Buddy Cianci says, shows that this race, has become something more than just a political battle.

"It's become very personal." said Cianci.

So personal that both Congressman Cicilline and candidate Gemma, barely acknowledged each other during Tuesday's debate at 630-WPRO Radio, even though they were sitting just a foot away from each other.

The two spent a good deal of time during the hour long debate, battling over the charges of voter fraud that Gemma brought against Cicilline, just a few weeks ago.

"I think the baseless attack that Mr. Gemma made against me is just that baseless. It was a last ditch effort to help a desperate campaign and I think voters deserve better than that." said Rep. Cicilline.

Gemma responded by saying, "If I were a voter I'd be a little bit concerned because this is very important. It's very important to voters here in Rhode Island and when this chapter in history is written I believe voting will never be the same."

Now one of the most memorable moments during the debate, came when the moderator, Bill Haberman, asked each man if they would vote for the other in the general election in November, if they lost the primary.

"I will vote for the entire Democratic ticket period...I'll vote for whoever the Democratic nominee is." said Rep. Cicilline.

Anthony Gemma didn't share Cicilline's sentiment though saying, "I will not vote for him. Not in good conscience, knowing what I do about David Cicilline, I will not do it."

After taking in each candidates performance, ABC6 News Chief Political Analyst Buddy Cianci believes that Tuesday's debate, did little to change the dynamic of the primary campaign.

"I still think its gonna be a close race its still up for grabs, but I think that Cicilline has the edge." said Cianci.

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