District 4 Executive Council candidates Chris Pappas and Bob Burns met in debate Wednesday. They are vying to replace outgoing councilor Ray Weiczorek.
Burns and Pappas clashed from the outset: over the state’s contract with Planned Parenthood, over judicial appointments and over their respective political philosophies. Pappas accused Burns of operating from within the ideological straightjacket of the Tea Party, an approach Pappas claimed would make things worse in Concord.
“We really need to get back to a point where we can all be working together and putting these political arguments and divide and conquer strategies aside.”
Burns countered that Pappas, who is openly homosexual, has accepted campaign donations from out-of-state gay rights activists. Burns suggested Pappas will do their bidding. He also stressed that voters should never expect him to be pliant.
“Honestly I don’t think I’d compromise on anything. I think that I have a set of goals and values and things. You know this is the Executive Council. This isn’t about negotiation; this is about go or no go.”
Burns is now Hillsborough county treasurer, a post he won by defeating Pappas, who held the post from 2006 to 2010.