- Associated Press - Monday, October 24, 2016

REDMOND, Wash. (AP) - Republican Chris Vance continued his criticism that Sen. Patty Murray is too much of an entrenched partisan to solve congressional deadlock as the two met Sunday evening in their second debate.

Senator Murray is a wholehearted supporter of Hillary Clinton’s, and I’ve yet to hear her criticize Democrats for anything,” Vance said during the debate at Microsoft’s Redmond campus.

The Seattle Times reports ( https://bit.ly/2eIADi6 ) that Murray said of her party’s presidential nominee: “I know where her heart is… I’ve worked with her and watched her as secretary of state lift up women around the globe.”

Murray, seeking her fifth term, pointed to efforts to end a 2013 budget impasse with Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan as an example of how she can work with the other side.

Vance argued again Sunday that the $19.7?trillion federal debt threatens to become a dangerous drag on the U.S. economy. He favors the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles plan that calls for raising the Social Security retirement age, to 68 by 2050, and raising the cap on taxable income for Social Security, now at $118,000.

Murray noted that the federal government ran a surplus during Bill Clinton’s presidency. She has said she’s opposed to raising the Social Security retirement age and would instead seek a debt-reduction plan that doesn’t sting the middle class, without specifying what that is.

Vance, the former chairman of the Washington Republican Party, hasn’t advertised on major TV stations and has only raised $387,000 through September, according to the latest campaign reports.

With $12.4 million in contributions, Murray has enjoyed such a fundraising edge that she gave $1?million last month to other Senate Democratic campaigns.

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