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Politics & Government

Technical Problems Interrupt Hinckley Institute’s Conversations With Utah Congressional Candidates

A side by side photo of Chris Stewart and Kael Weston.
Emily Means
/
KUER
Rep. Chris Stewart, R-UT, and Democrat Kael Weston participated in two separate conversations with Hinckley Institute of Politics Director Jason Perry. Stewart’s was pre-recorded, but Weston’s was live — and what seemed to be a bad internet connection interrupted his message.

Although both are published authors, Kael Weston, the Democratic candidate for Utah’s 2nd Congressional District, said there are many differences between him and his opponent, Rep. Chris Stewart, R-UT.

But what seemed to be a bad internet connection during a live interview with the Hinckley Institute of Politics Monday, made it hard for the audience to hear Weston’s stance on some major issues, such as the Lake Powell Pipeline and his top legislative priorities.

One answer that was clear: why he is running for office.

“I knew that 2020 was going to be an important year because of Donald Trump and Chris Stewart,” Weston said. “I think that, together, they represent the wrong path ahead.”

In a pre-recorded interview, Stewart said he has a close relationship with the president.

“In some ways, he’s a divisive political figure, but he’s not the only one,” Stewart said. “For heaven’s sakes, he’s been mercilessly attacked from his political rivals from the very first day. And I think all of us need to be willing to say our team, our tribe needs to tone it down a little bit.”

Julie Bartel, the communications director for Weston’s campaign, said they’ve requested a do-over with the Hinckley Institute.

The Utah Debate Commission has scheduled a debate between the two candidates for Oct. 19. Bartel said Weston has also requested that Stewart join him for additional debates, but the congressman has yet to confirm his participation.

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