Republican senate candidates hold debate in Germantown

GERMANTOWN, Tenn. (AP) - Republican US Senate candidates Ed Bryant and Van Hilleary promoted themselves to conservative voters in a debate tonight in Germantown. Bryant, Hilleary and GOP political newcomer Jeff Moder said the important thing in the race is for voters to elect someone who can beat Congressman Harold Ford Junior of Memphis, the apparent front-runner for the Democratic nomination. The winner of the general election will replace Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a Republican. Another Republican candidate, Bob Corker, a former Chattanooga mayor and state finance commissioner, declined to participate in the debate. Instead, he attended the State of the Union address in Washington with Congressman Zach Wamp of Chattanooga. The debate was sponsored by the Main Street Journal, a monthly political publication in Memphis.

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