Barbara Boxer and Carly Fiorina spar in debate

Hoping to arrest an ominous slide in two recent polls, California U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina went on a full-scale attack against three-term incumbent Barbara Boxer as a tax-and-spend failure in a radio debate today in Pasadena, while Boxer painted Fiorina as an anti-environmental extremist out of sync with state voters.

Democrat Boxer, a self-described “fighter,” and Republican Fiorina, the hard-charging former chief executive of Hewlett-Packard, reprised their gloves-off televised matchup earlier this month, offering starkly different views of immigration, health care, water, war and creating jobs for the 12.2 percent of Californians who are out of work, the third-highest unemployment rate in the nation.

The candidates were interrupted frequently, if often unsuccessfully, by moderators Patt Morrison and Gabriel Lerner to nudge them off their talking points. Boxer continuing to slam Fiorina’s tenure at HP but was admonished that Fiorina is running for the Senate, not to be head of HP. Fiorina was pressed, but refused to name, the “extremist” environmental groups she accused Boxer of being beholden to.

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