(WIVB) — The candidates running in the special election for the 27th Congressional District seat held a debate Tuesday on News 4.
The two major-party candidates running in the special election are Republican Chris Jacobs and Democrat Nate McMurray.
News 4 planned a debate in early April, but had to postpone due to the coronavirus.
New york’s 27th congressional district spans eight counties, including the suburbs of Buffalo and Rochester, as well as towns and cities in the Finger Lakes region.
The seat for the district has been vacant since October of 2019 when former Republican Congressman Chris Collins resigned following an insider trading scandal.
Collins pleaded guilty to federal charges. His prison sentence remains suspended because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This special election to fill the empty seat will be held on June 23. It will happen on the same date, and on the same ballot, as the Republican primary.
Mcmurray is the former supervisor of the Town of Grand Island. He ran for this seat in 2018 — narrowly losing to the incumbent at the time Chris Collins.
Jacobs is a state senator and has previously served as the Erie County Clerk and on the Buffalo School Board.
Duane Witmer, an accountant from Lake View, will appear on the Libertarian line.
Republicans living in the district will vote twice on June 23. They’ll vote in the special election for congressional representation for the next six months.
They’ll also vote for the GOP candidate they want to see on the general election ballot in November.
The Republican Primary will feature Jacobs, Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw, and former Darien Town Justice Beth Parlato.
Whatever happens in the Republican Primary will not have an impact on the results of the special election.
.@JacobsNY27 says some people laid off during #Covid19 are making more on unemployment & won’t come back to work. He says we need a policy fix for this.@Nate_McMurray says he will fight against businesses not hiring all employees back. #DebateOn4@news4buffalo pic.twitter.com/ONQj7M6YGH— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 9, 2020
.@Nate_McMurray says he absolutely supports Black Lives Matter. African Americans have been perpetually discriminated against in our country. He says he’ll stand up to the President. #DebateOn4 @news4buffalo— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 10, 2020
#DebateOn4:@Nate_McMurray:— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 9, 2020
We need a society that’s fair. He promises to work toward a society where we care for each other & respect human rights on all individuals. @JacobsNY27: Jacobs accuses McMurray of defunding police. McMurray says that’s a lie. pic.twitter.com/8W5BiVu5sM
.@Nate_McMurray: Absolutely not. President Trump is embarassing us and violating our freedom of speech.@JacobsNY27: Peaceful protests were hijacked by radicals. That’s not the America that will move us forward. He salutes anyone who is stepping up to bring law & order. pic.twitter.com/AwSS7nb8xb— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 9, 2020
.@JacobsNY27: The officers were doing their job, but did not have an intent to injure.— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 9, 2020
.@Nate_McMurray says Jacobs didn’t answer the question & doesn’t have the guts to stand up to the President #Debateon4 @news4buffalo pic.twitter.com/WNidPeJuXF
.@JacobsNY27: We need to be better prepared for ventilators, PPE & work toward developing a vaccine. He says we need to realize China is a threat to our nation. We need to bring jobs back to our country. #DebateOn4 @news4buffalo pic.twitter.com/AjLEt0wGF1— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 9, 2020
.@JacobsNY27: We need to make sure the process is secure. He supports it during #Covid19, but says otherwise there are concerns.@Nate_McMurray: There is no problem with mail-in ballots. #DebateOn4 @news4buffalo pic.twitter.com/4iBkENQKng— Christy Kern (@christykern4) June 9, 2020