Booker, Bell debate at 6abc studios

TRENTON (WPVI) -- Democratic US Senator Cory Booker and Republican challenger Jeff Bell met in our WPVI Trenton studios for a lively exchange based on questions from a panel of journalists including our own Jim Gardner.

Among the topics discussed: Ebola, terrorism, jobs and raising the federal minimum wage.

"We are America. Nobody should work full time and find themselves under the poverty line, having to go to food banks, and rely on public assistance just to make ends meet," Booker said.

"The minimum wage, even if you like it, is redistribution. It takes money from one sector and gives it to another. It has nothing whatsoever to do with fixing the economy and creating new jobs," Bell said.

Bell is a conservative author and former presidential speech writer who just moved back to New Jersey after living in Virginia for 30 years.

Booker is the former mayor of Newark who won a special election last year and is now running for a full 6-year term.

"He himself has told us I believe in the Tea Party militancy. That means digging in, don't compromise. The kind of shut down government problems we've had. Americans have had enough of that," Booker said.

"Polarization is sometimes a public service because it enables voters to see the difference between two points of view. That's the sense in which I think polarization is sometimes good," Bell said.

The latest polls show Booker has anywhere from a 15 to a 24 point lead over Bell.

This is the one and only debate between Booker and Bell.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 4th.
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