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Health Care Debate Rages on in Key Senate Races Health Care Debate Rages on in Key Senate Races

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Health Care Debate Rages on in Key Senate Races

Health care was a hot button issue in two key Senate races this week, where the postures of a couple of candidates were a bit surprising, considering the partisan leans of their states:

-- In Hawaii, Democrats went on the attack when former Republican Gov. Linda Lingle said she was willing to support repealing the federal health care law unless changes are made to reduce costs for families and small businesses. Democratic Rep. Mazie Hirono began fundraising off the comment and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee blasted around Lingle's comments.

In a state where President Obama and his policies are considerably more popular than they are elsewhere, Democrats want to tie Lingle to national party figures like Mitt Romney and Mitch McConnell. Lingle's comments -- though nuanced -- gave Democrats an opening.

-- In Nebraska, former Sen. Bob Kerrey challenged Republican nominee Deb Fischer to A health care debate. For Kerrey, who is an underdog, the desire to secure more debate opportunities against Fischer is a typical strategy. But given Kerrey's past comments about moving further left on health care and the Republican tilt of Nebraska, is it necessarily the best idea for Kerrey to be pitching the idea of a health care debate? Nonetheless, Fischer didn't appear inclined to want to debate Kerrey on the issue directly.

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