Earlier today, a congressional candidates' forum was held in Fort Wayne with all three of the candidates - Marlin Stutzman, Tom Hayhurst & Scott Wise - discussing issues relating to the disabled.
Held at the Abundant Life Church on Coliseum Blvd. and hosted by the Northeast Indiana Disability Advocacy Coalition (NEIDAC), its 3rd District Congressional Candidate Forum featured eight prepared questions for the candidates on current legislation related to disability issues, and initially questions from the attending public.
The ball got rolling at 5:30 p.m, with Andy Downs (far left) moderating. The forum didn't get a lot of coverage prior to tonight, although the local media covered the event well. It looked like about 40 people were in attendance.
Marlin Stutzman was consistent during the forum, expressing both his support of some of the discussed legislation and concerns about overreaching federal jurisdiction on other pieces of legislation.
Tom Hayhurst, a doctor and former Fort Wayne City Councilman, tried to sound like a Blue Dog Democrat, but his disparaging of local and state government on a few occasions gave him away, in my opinion.
Scott Wise, the Libertarian nominee and Whitley County Councilman, conveyed his support for some of the discussed legislation also, as well as expressing the failures and increased growth of the federal government.
Looking over the prepared questions, the one thing I was bothered by concerned what the federal government defines as disability, a definition of which has been known to be far too broad and can be used to apply to those who truly aren't disabled. Shortly after 7 p.m., the forum wrapped up, followed by a meet and greet with the candidates. Because the prepared questions took longer to finish, the public-submitted questions were not asked.
I don't know what the public felt about the forum, but I came away certain Marlin Stutzman had done well tonight.
Update (Oct. 6th, 9:54 AM EDT): I uploaded a picture; I have a difficult time trying to upload any picture on this blog these days.