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Race to replace John Kerry: Who's real champion of the 'little guy'?

In the first televised debate between the Massachusetts Democrats seeking to replace John Kerry in the Senate, Stephen Lynch accused front-runner Ed Markey of 'siding with the big guys.'

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Democratic hopeful for the US Senate Mass. US Reps. Stephen Lynch, left, and Edward Markey, center, prepare for a televised debate as moderator R.D. Sahl, right, looks on at the WCVB-TV studios in Needham, Mass., Wednesday, March 27, 2013.

Steven Senne/AP

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In their first televised debate before a special US Senate election, Rep. Stephen Lynch sought to make up some ground against front-runner Rep. Ed Markey, framing the race as a debate over which of them really stands up for ordinary citizens.

The two Democrats, in their bids for the seat recently vacated by John Kerry (D), sparred over issues ranging from health care and abortion to the economic plight of Bay State fishermen.

Representative Lynch challenged his rival to explain a vote to bail out the banking industry in 2008, and his ties to big telecommunications firms.

 

“There seems to be a pattern,” Lynch said in the Wednesday match-up. “You’re siding with the big guys against the little guys…. What’s up with that?”

Representative Markey, the longest-serving member of the state’s congressional delegation, parried the attacks by saying he has used his career in the House to break up telecom monopolies, and that the banking bailout was needed to rescue the whole economy from the risk of a severe depression.

“We could not allow the banking system to collapse onto the hopes and dreams of every family in America,” Markey said.

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