Havre Daily News/Lindsay Brown
A group of people watch Wednesday's presidential debate at the Havre Republican headquarters.
Before the real excitement of the local candidate forum at 7 p. m. today at Havre High School, America got its debating toes wet with an opener Wednesday night, the 2012 presidential candidates.
A handful of Hill County Republicans gathered at their headquarters for the first direct contest of this year’s interminable presidential race, the first presidential debate between President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.
Rep. Kris Hansen, who is running to continue representing District 33, sat at the front of the half dozen Republicans out last night.
Though a little frustrated by lax time limits that drew lengthy answers, Hansen said she was glad to hear Romney advocating the kinds of tax code reform that she hopes to bring to Montana during the next session.
Hansen also called into question a claim Obama made about having cut middle class taxes during his term. According to Hansen, Havre Public Schools Trustee Norm Proctor said he noticed a decrease in his Social Security taxes, but none of the other Republicans knew what the president could be talking about.
The group was pretty small, but Hansen said that is probably because of people expecting to go to tonight’s forum, or to a Republican candidate meet-and-greet scheduled for Friday night. She also explained being the only candidate present, as she’s the only one who still lives in Hill County. Senate candidate Don Richman lives in Harlem and Wendy Warburton recently moved to Chinook.
The local Democrats must have had a more private gathering, if any. Their headquarters on the first floor of the Atrium Mall had open doors and the lights on, but nobody was home. And the Democrat’s regular gathering spot, the Eagles Club, was mostly empty with all of the TVs set to The Weather Channel.