Multiple Pennsylvania voters on a panel moderated by Fox News host Martha MacCallum questioned Democratic Lt. Gov. John Fetterman’s performance in Tuesday night’s debate against Dr. Mehmet Oz.
“What we saw last night was sad to say the least. I felt for him. I felt empathetic for him, and at the same time concerned,” P.J. Dolan, an Independent, said Wednesday afternoon. “I’m concerned that they even put him out there to be honest with you. I mean, we’re seeing that twice now.” (RELATED: Democrats, Media Rush To Defend Fetterman After Debate With Oz)
Dolan noted that while Fetterman “could be capable of the job,” the Democrat’s performance during the debate pushed him towards supporting Oz, the Republican candidate to replace retiring Republican Sen. Pat Toomey.
Fetterman and Oz debated Tuesday night, clashing over crime, abortion, inflation and Dr. Oz’s residence. Fetterman suffered a stroke May 13, and declined multiple invitations prior to Tuesday’s debate, citing his stroke.
The refusals prompted Oz to question whether Fetterman was fit to serve, and led to editorials from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Washington Post calling on Fetterman to debate his Republican opponent.
“I was somewhat concerned. But knowing what I know about strokes, I know that it takes a while to recover,” Cynthia Watkins, who worked for Democrats in the state legislature, said. “Because somebody is not finding words or stumbling over words doesn’t mean that they’re incapable of serving.”
“I was a bit empathetic watching him, because I feel like he needs be able to make decisions and I’m not certain looking at his performance last night, that we can count on him as Pennsylvanians to make good decisions and represent us,” Matt Barrick, a registered Republican who described himself as “undecided” going into the debate, told MacCallum. “There was a neurologist on that I watched following the debate last night who was saying she doesn’t know any more than the rest of us, but typically the therapy done in the first six to eight months is about as good as it’s going to get.”
Two of the panelists noted that high gas prices affected decisions in their daily lives. A gallon of gas costs an average of $3.76 according to AAA, up from $3.38 a year ago and $2.12 on Nov. 3, 2020.
“Driving a large truck sucks up the gas mileage,” Shane Elsinger, a Libertarian, told MacCallum. “It certainly makes a difference on how far you want to travel to take a job and do things like that. You have to factor in more considerations than you used to before.”
Polling shows a close race between Oz and Fetterman.
“After last night I feel strongly where I need to put my vote,” Elsinger said.
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