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Little, Jordan talk issues at Idaho gubernatorial debate

Idaho’s gubernatorial candidates struck starkly different tones on transparency, health care and education during a live televised debate Monday evening.

Lt. Gov. Brad Little, a longtime Republican lawmaker who has served as lieutenant governor since 2009, faced Democrat Paulette Jordan, a former state lawmaker and member of the Coeur d’Alene Tribal Council on the Idaho Public Television debate.

Jordan said current state leadership has failed to adequately fund public education and that she would increase public school funding by saving elsewhere, particularly by stopping out-of-state prison spending and by expanding Medicaid, which she said would save $400 million in the first year.

Little said he would support the will of voters on the Medicaid expansion initiative, and said his plan for education includes increased support for early education programs, a focus on making sure third-graders are successful readers and increasing career training and college counseling.

The debate is a collaborative effort of the Idaho Press Club, Idaho universities, the League of Women Voters Education Fund, and Idaho Public Television.

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