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First Lady, Lazio Hold a Testy Final Debate

October 28, 2000|From Associated Press

NEW YORK — Hillary Rodham Clinton and Rick Lazio held the final, most contentious debate of their Senate campaign Friday, hurling charges over education, housing and support from Palestinian groups.

"Order, order!" WNBC-TV host Gabe Pressman implored at one point.

The verbal fireworks began minutes into the one-hour debate when the Republican congressman accused Clinton of leaving Arkansas schools "at the bottom of the barrel" before she became first lady.

Clinton took exception to Lazio's attack, insisting that "the work we did in Arkansas received numerous awards and praise."

The testy exchanges came as the campaigns unveiled financial reports that show Clinton and Lazio have spent a combined $58.7 million so far, making it one of the most expensive political contests in the nation's history.

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