Chafee wants you to give him a break about Glass-Steagall

October 14, 2015

Democrats had their first swing at a pre-primary debate on Tuesday, but for former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee, the night was a miss as he stumbled to defend his voting record from his time in Congress.

Despite touting years of legislative and executive experience, when faced with a question on a vote early in his tenure that supported the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act, Chafee clammed up and said that he should be cut some slack, citing his novice in the office and the bereavement of his late father.

“I think you’re being a little rough,” he argued to CNN debate moderator Anderson Cooper, who called out Chafee for being tough on Hillary Clinton’s history with Wall Street, despite not supporting the controversial big-bank act.

“I’d just arrived at the United States Senate. I’d been mayor of my city. My dad had died. I’d been appointed by the governor. It was the first vote and it was 90-5 because it was a conference report,” he insisted.

Viewers took notice of the governor’s apparent struggle with the question.

Despite being one of the least Google-searched contenders in the Democratic pack, Chafee’s comments caught fire online and became one of the top Twitter moments of the night. Still, the trip-up only provided a minor moment of shine for Chafee, who finished as the least mentioned of the five candidates, according to Twitter.

Chafee ranks just above the bottom of the Democratic pack, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling. In an October 13 survey, Chafee held just 1 percent of possible Democratic support, outpolling just one contender, former Virginia Senator Jim Webb.

Democratic U.S. presidential candidates (L-R) former U.S. Senator Jim Webb, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley and former Governor of Rhode Island Lincoln Chafee pose before the start of the first official Democratic candidates debate of the 2016 presidential campaign in Las Vegas, Nevada October 13, 2015. REUTERS/Mike Blake

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