Video and Photos: Candidates for U.S Senate Debate in Orlando

This morning, the candidates lining up to take on Bill Nelson in the race for U.S Senate debated at Howard Middle School in Downtown Orlando.

Sponsored the The Florida Family Policy Council and the Orlando Tea Party, former State Rep. Adam Hasner, former Senator George Lemieux, ex-Army Colonel Mike McCalister, and Ruth Chris CEO Craig Miller debated in front of a couple hundred conservatives on a sunny, Saturday morning.

Moderated by Keith Landry from FOX 35, the candidates debated on everything from abortion to fiscal responsibility, taking questions from a rotating panel of 6 conservative leaders. There was no mud-slinging. Organizers and participants agreed beforehand that they would stick strictly to the issues and questions presented by the panel.

That was kinda of a downer but, it was a fine debate none the less..

Let’s break it down by candidate.

Adam Hasner:It’s a good thing he was at this thing because the other guys can be a little mild. Hasner brought some energy to the table as he talked about sending Conservative reinforcements to Washington in 2012. His plans also have a little more meat to them, especially on fiscal matters.

George Lemieux:What really gives Lemieux an advantage is that he’s been there, and done that in Washington. He draws experience from his 18 months serving as one of the most junior members of the Senate and brings more operational knowledge to the table. When he’s answering questions, he brings up personal experiences in D.C during his resply. However, he must banish all mention of Charlie Crist during his introduction. That’s an uncomfortable feeling when your sitting in a conservative audience.

Mike McCalister: Ugh, notes…..Guys if you’re not sitting behind a podium and if your opponents aren’t using notes then, don’t use them. McCalister toted this oversized legal pad during the entire two hour debate. His knowledge on the issues was limited and more likely to throw some snappy backtalk to the panel than, bring a solid solution to the table. That being said…

His call to abolish the IRS and leave the U.N did receive the biggest ovation during the debate.

Craig Miller: Craig didn’t have Hasner’s energy, or Lemieux’s experience or even McCalister’s down home appeal. All he could offer was some personal experiences in the hospitality field and a couple of ideas that have been heard by other conservatives running for office in 2012.

but don’t take my word for it…I’ve uploaded some footage from the debate as well as some photos. It was great to attend a live debate again, it’s been almost a year!

Adam Hasner, George Lemieux, Mike McCallister, and Craig Miller

FOX 35 Anchor, Keith Landry moderated the Debate

Conservative Leaders and Opinionators asked questions to the candidates

From what I saw today, these two are still the best bet for Republicans

I didn't see anything from these two that would threaten Bill Nelson

Hasner brought some much needed energy to the debate

Likeable? Yes ... Versed on the issues? Suspect....

This was a home game for Miller but applause was scarce for the former CEO

Adam Hasner taking photographs with supporters

The former Senator took a slow exit speaking to every voter along the way

More to come! Please keep checking back for more photos and video footage!