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Tierney Takes on Family Legal Issues, Says Tisei Using Them 'To Get to Me'

The three candidates for the Sixth Congressional District debated at Danvers High School on Wednesday night.

Congressman John Tierney was the first one to bring up his in-laws' legal problems during Wednesday night’s debate, accusing Republican challenger Richard Tisei of attacking his wife’s family to get to him.

It was an issue that was left out of the first debate involving the two in Lynn last week and a topic that the Boston Herald had previously reported would be left out of several debates at the request of Tierney (D-Salem).

“You attacked my wife and her family as a way to get to me,” Tierney told Tisei, a former state senator from Wakefield, who was seated on the opposite side of Libertarian candidate Daniel Fishman of Beverly on stage in the auditorium at Danvers High School.

Tierney’s statement came in response to a question from Salem News Managing Editor Helen Gifford asking about the tone of the campaign.

Before Tierney spoke, Tisei defended the tone of the campaign, noting he has run four positive commercials and that Tierney’s ads attacking him have been “way over the top.”

Tisei said he is the only gay, pro-choice Congressional candidate in the country that has not signed Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge that is being accused of being a “Tea Party extremist.”

“It speaks to the Congressman’s credibility more than mine,” Tisei said.

Tierney said that his ad uses Tisei’s own words and record and that his ads are not misleading.

“What you just heard from Congressman Tierney is exactly what the problem is in this country,” Tisei said.

Unlike the first debate involving the three candidates in the Sixth Congressional District that focused on “The American Dream,” Wednesday night’s event was wide ranging, covering everything from the United States’ relationship with Israel to the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. In addition to the Salem News, the debate was sponsored by the Jewish Journal.

Fishman, who received the same three minutes to answer each question that Tierney and Tisei got, said his campaign conducted a poll that found 80 percent of voters in the district would vote for Fishman if Tierney and Tisei were not running.

“Only 20 percent of you find me objectionable,” he said, noting that the poll also found that the race is a "dead heat.”

The crowd was feisty, cheering and booing at several times during the 70-minute long debate that filled almost every one of the 600 seats in the auditorium.

Were you at the debate? Who won? Why? Tell us in the comments.

Saber Walsh October 11, 2012 at 01:03 PM
“You attacked my wife and her family as a way to get to me,” sounds more like the words of Tony Soprano. This form of extreme arrogance and insulting behavior is not deserving of the level of responsibility we expect of him. I'm only sad to see that the mayors aligned with the Donkey Party came out to support this hopefully-unemployed hack -- that was really not very smart of them. My only issue with Fishman is that he's much like Tim "Pull the Vote" Cahill: he doesn't stand a chance yet he will pull votes from Tisei and John "I Never Read the Affordable Care Act but I Love It!" Tierney will win with fewer votes than Tisei & Fishman combined.
david m October 11, 2012 at 05:42 PM
I found it objectionable that John Tierney, in his closing remarks, chose to tell the audience that Richard Tisei had not paid any taxes in 2 of the last 5 years. What surprised me was in a "debate" on Fox 25 for which John Tierney did not show up (at least there was an empty chair for him), Richard Tisei explained that in those years, when the housing market was in a perilous drop (Richard owns a real estate company) he had no taxable income therefore paid no tax. But John Tierney found this immoral since Richard owns a home on the Cape. One would hope that this attack is not brought up again since it has been answered at least to my satisfaction. Is the Congressman accusing Richard of tax fraud? I bet he isn't but does it to make a terrible implication that Richard is a tax cheat. He obviously isn't.
Patricia October 11, 2012 at 06:03 PM
I find it appalling that Tierney would have the gaul to say to the public that he had no idea that his wife was laundering money for her brothers. Even his brothers in law said he knew very well what was going on. He has been living off the taxpayer money for far too long. He's way past his expiration date.
Steve October 11, 2012 at 11:27 PM
Boo hoo pockets Tierney. Baby.

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