U.S. Senate 2010: Boxer, Fiorina Differ Sharply

Incumbent Barbara Boxer seeks fourth term in the U.S. Senate, while Republican Carly Fiorina bids to unseat her.

Written by TAYLOR EVANKO / Published October 29, 2010

California voters will decide who will represent the state in the U.S. Senate for the next six years on Nov. 2 as incumbent Barbara Boxer’s term comes to a close.

Republican nominee Carly Fiorina is challenging the Democratic junior senator who has served California in the Senate since 1993.  The two candidates differ sharply on the nation’s most prominent issues, particularly the budget, healthcare, and job creation.

Fiorina, endorsed by Sarah Palin and the Tea Party, supports the Bush tax cuts and deregulation to create jobs and is fiercely against any new taxes in this economy.  She is also in favor of cutting government spending as an attempt to bring the national debt and deficit under control.

Additionally, Fiorina wants to repeal the Obama Administration’s healthcare law and supports the war in Afghanistan and attaining energy independence in America by increasing energy production from natural gas, coal, oil, solar, wind, and nuclear energy.  Instead of the recently passed legislation, Fiorina supports open competition in the free market as part of a solution to the healthcare system.

In contrast, Boxer supports clean energy jobs and many public works projects to revitalize California and the nation’s economy.  She has also worked to raise the minimum wage and extend unemployment benefits in recent years.

Boxer is a supporter of Obama’s healthcare law, has fought for the funding of research to find cures for many diseases, and opposes any cuts to Medicare.  Since the beginning of the war, she has worked to bring troops home from Iraq and end combat operations.  In contrast to her opponent, Boxer supports the right for same-sex couples to marry.

During the campaign, Fiorina has been criticized by her opponents for laying off 30,000 employees as CEO of Hewlett-Packard while her personal multi-million dollar salary remained untouched.

However, Boxer has been attacked for her record as a politician, particularly her support of the stimulus bill passed in early 2009, which Fiorina claims to be a waste of money by the federal government.  While the efficiency and necessity of the stimulus act may be debated between the two candidates, Boxer’s stance on the issue is likely a drag on her campaign, as most Californians have not benefitted directly from stimulus funds.

Current polls suggest that Boxer is slightly favored to be re-elected to another term, but the race is tight enough that Fiorina could still pull off an upset win.

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