Asked if they agree there is systemic racism in the U.S., Eastman said “absolutely, and it is time that we address it at all levels.”
She criticized President Donald Trump for not forcefully condemning white supremacy on the debate stage. And she criticized Bacon’s opposition to Democratic policing legislation.
Bacon did not directly say whether he agrees there is “systemic racism” in the United States but instead talked about “inequalities” that must be addressed.
“The fact that we’ve had long-term inequality with income, education, health outcomes, we can’t look past that,” Bacon said. “We need to tackle it because it’s our moral duty to do so.”
Bacon said his plan includes opportunity zones, career technical education and targeting small business loans to minorities. He also pointed to anti-lynching legislation that he helped get approved.
He supported a Republican version of policing reform but said Democratic proposals would have stripped police of qualified immunity.
He said that amounts to defunding the police, because they would be unable to recruit new officers. Eastman stressed she does not support defunding the police.
Former Rep. Brad Ashford, D-Neb., released a statement just minutes before the debate endorsing Bacon and touting the incumbent’s ability to work across the aisle.