WNDU: Reaction to Walorski, Hall debate at Elkhart watch party

ELKHART, Ind. (WNDU)- The community had a chance Tuesday to watch as Republican incumbent Jackie Walorski faced off against Democrat Mel Hall at a watch party in Elkhart.

Everyone had a different reason for watching the debate, but many said it helped them decide who to vote for.

“I thought it was terrific,” said Terry Trimmer. “Both of the candidates came across very well.”

For many, they’re familiar with the issues of the community, while others are still figuring it out.

“Because I’m new to the area, I needed to see what the politicians are speaking about in this area,” said Pauletta Turpin.

Turpin moved to the area a year ago.

“There was a few things I still had questions regarding, which was answered,” she said.

Some said the constant bashing wasn’t too bothersome, like when Hall accused Walorski of not having an open door policy and she accused him of living in D.C. for an extended period of time.

“I think that’s okay, and I believe our democracy is strong enough for it,” said Carol Weld. “We’re going to be better, and I think a lot of the different issues need to be addressed.”

Ultimately it comes down to casting that vote.

“The first time I voted, I tell you, you feel so good, and ever since I’ve been voting, at this age I still feel great,” said Turpin.

“I tell my young people if they’re voting age, they need to get into a regular habit,” Weld said. “Our democracy needs it, that everyone does speak in this way.”

The watch party was combined with an event to let Elkhart County residents to learn about all of the candidates on the ballot. It was put on by the League of Women Voters of Elkhart County and the American Democracy Project of IU South Bend.

About 40 of those candidates got a chance to speak in front of the crowd.

Event organizers wanted everyone to have a chance to hear from the people that are running for positions, and many are grateful they had a chance to listen.

“Yeah you can read, and you can see, but it’s the best I find that you can actually be able to see them and converse with them afterwards if necessary,” Turpin said.

Afterwards, people did have a chance to meet one-on-one with the candidates.

Early voting has already begun and election day is only three weeks away. Event organizers want to make sure you make it out to cast your ballot.

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