After his painfully awkward appearance on "Chicago Tonight" in April, Republican candidate for lieutenant governor Jason Plummer returned to the show Monday night to debate Democratic candidate Sheila Simon.
While he managed to get through the debate without "blanking," Plummer still had few answers for host Phil Ponce in terms of why he refuses to release his income tax returns and what the Brady Administration would do to fix the state's massive budget shortfall.
Almost immediately after the show began, Ponce grilled Plummer on his failure to disclose his taxes. Plummer maintained that it was a "privacy issue," but implied that he has paid an ample amount of taxes in the past five years.
Simon made sure to point out that she and her running mate, Governor Pat Quinn, made their taxes available for public viewing--and that not doing so implies that there is something to hide.
Other issues that came up during the appearance were free rides for senior citizens on public transit. Plummer said they should be stopped, since the state could no longer afford the program. Simon said the program should be looked into.
The two had different opinions on nearly every subject. Plummer said he thinks Illinois citizens should be allowed to carry concealed weapons and own assault weapons. Simon thinks both should be illegal.
Plummer actually strayed from his running mate Bill Brady on one issue: abortion.
When asked whether he felt a woman should be forced to carry a child that was conceived during rape or incest, Plummer said no. Brady opposes abortion in all cases.
In recent weeks, Brady made headlines for his position on Creationism. Brady believes schools should be able to teach the Biblical version of creation--rather than evolution--if they want to. When asked by Ponce whether he felt it was appropriate to teach Creationism in schools, Plummer said yes, but seemed confused or shy about his own position.
Ponce: Do you believe in Creationism? Yes or no.
Plummer: Uh...yes, I do.
Ponce: You believe that the world was created in six days and is 10,000 years old?
Plummer: My philosophical beliefs and my life is based on my faith and my faith is rooted in my Christian faith.
Ponce pressed the issue once more, and Plummer seemed agitated.
"My faith is my faith," he said. "But that that's not an issue voters are talking about."
Simon said she believes children should be taught science in schools.
Plummer went on to accuse Simon and Gov. Quinn of spreading misinformation and attacks.
"The only attacks I've made have been on -- they can't be on your record, because you don't have one -- but on your running mate's record," Simon said.
WATCH the debate here: