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Feb 10, 2011 7:25 PM by Shawn Kline

Senate candidates debate state budget

A pair of candidates squaring-off today at UL.
As Nathan Granger and Jonathan Perry eye-up the open senate seat in District 26, our own Shawn Kline joined a panel of journalists to question why these candidates are right for the job. The main theme coming from the debate- the state's budget woes.
"We're not enemies." Candidate, Nathan Granger says, "we're opponents who are looking out for what's best of the citizens of District 26."
Whoever's elected on the 17th will face some challenges. More specifically, redistricting and mending a state budget that's nearly $2 billion in the red.
"We're at the cliff." Candidate, Jonathan Perry says, "because of the budget that was passed which I voted against."
Perry currently represents House District 47.
He says his colleagues voted for a bad budget last year- and this year, the deficit could grow even more. That's why he says it's time to start chopping.
"We have got to do more streamlining." Perry says, "we have to start cutting because when we cut at the top, it benefits (the citizens)."
"When you don't have money in your checkbook, you quit writing checks. it's simple math."
Nathan Granger is a Vermilion Parish Police Juror. He says the state budget isn't much different from a business budget; something the small business owner knows a lot about.
"I know budgets backwards, forwards and upside-down," Granger said. "If I don't understand it, I can't survive."
Surviving a budget crisis one of these two candidates will vote-on in 2011.

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