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Rowdy crowd spurs on U.S. Senate candidates Bills, Klobuchar

In an hour-long debate hosted by Minnesota Public Radio on Thursday, DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Republican challenger Kurt Bills mixed it up to hooting and cheering supporters on both sides. Bills sharply criticized the incumbent's stances and his fans booed her, and she shot back with pointed words of her own.
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In a debate at the State Fair on Thursday, U.S. Senate candidates Republican Kurt Bills and DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar jousted in front of an engaged crowd, the Star Tribune reports.

"This election is really not Republican vs. Democrat anymore. It is America vs. Washington, DC," Bills said to cheers from his supporters. She pushed back. The Star Tribune says Klobuchar's fans cheered when she said, "I’m sorry, Rep. Bills, but you haven’t passed one bill that even got signed into law."

Klobuchar is considered a safe incumbent and even Republicans have acknowledged she is a tough incumbent to beat. Nearly any discussion of the race presumes Klobuchar is a virtual lock for re-election, the Associated Press recently reported.

Bills has had a tough time raising anywhere near the same kind of campaign cash as Klobuchar, MPR reported.

The two candidates met in their first face-to-face debate earlier this month at Farmfest. There are three more scheduled.

In other action at the fair, there is a battle of the booths going on related to two high-profile ballot initiatives, MinnPost reports. The booths aimed at persuading voters on the measures – related to gay marriage and a photo ID requirement for voting – are drawing supporters and even hecklers.

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