NY Attorney General candidates debate

October 10, 2010 8:59:26 AM PDT
A lively debate between the two candidates for New York Attorney General unfolded at our WABC-TV studios.

The race between Republican Dan Donovan and Democrat Eric Schneiderman, like so many others this year, has at times devolved into nastiness.

The debate was testy from the very beginning.

For example, a new TV by the Donovan campaign paints his democratic opponent as a lefty liberal who'll side with Al Sharpton.

"A radical left-wing Attorney General is the last thing we can afford," the ad says.

"And look i think this whole smear campaign my opponent is running calling me radical, look, I'm not sure, my positions are essentially the same as Andrew Cuomo's," Schneiderman said.

Although both said they would certainly uphold New York law, there were clear differences here:

-- Donovan said he is not in favor gay marriage, while Schneiderman supports it.

-- On abortion, Donovan is anti-abortion while Schneiderman pro-choice.

-- On Wall Street, they squabbled over who would be the better sheriff.

"And they asked me if i wanted to be the sheriff of wall street and my response was i don't want to be the next sheriff of anything. i don't need trophies over my mantle," Donovan said.

"You want to be the sheriff of nothing. I want to be the sheriff of Wall Street, of Albany and of Main Street," Schneiderman said.

Schneiderman also questioned why Donovan hasn't condemned fellow Republican Carl Paladino. Donovan said state law prevents prosecutors from making an endorsement.

"It took you for months to finally condemn Carl Paladino's racist and misogynistic emails that he sent around. And you have the right to comment, you're hiding behind a rule that prevents you from endorsing," Schneiderman said.

Throughout this campaign Donovan has tried to paint his opponent, a democrat in the state senate, as too closely tied to Albany.

He even did so in his closing statement, when candidates usually talk more about themselves.

"You want someone who is an Albany insider? Or someone who has the independence with no relations to all the special interests that have been choking our government for the last decade," Donovan said.

You can watch the full debate right here on this page.