Fetterman has stated repeatedly that he thought the person is likely to be fleeing a taking pictures, and didn’t know the race or gender of the person on the time. On Thursday, Fetterman additionally stated that he was reelected in Braddock, a majority-Black city, after the incident.

“It’s definitely not a state of affairs that anybody would wish to be concerned in,” he stated after being requested by a moderator whether or not he would have accomplished something in another way if he went via the identical state of affairs right now. “However I’d prefer to level out that I’m the one Democrat on stage who has efficiently confronted crime and gun violence.”

The controversy was one of many few remaining probabilities that Lamb and Kenyatta have to alter the trajectory of the first. In a ballot by Franklin & Marshall School launched earlier this month, Fetterman was main Lamb 41 % to 17 % amongst Democratic voters. Kenyatta obtained solely 4 %, whereas 26 % have been undecided.

Fetterman has additionally out-fundraised his opponents, bringing in $3.1 million within the first three months of the yr. Lamb introduced in $1.7 million, and Kenyatta collected about $300,000.

Lamb and Kenyatta each went after Fetterman aggressively. Lamb stated he wouldn’t reply the moderator’s query “as as to whether he did something flawed or ought to have accomplished in another way, and I simply assume it’s disqualifying for any of us who has to work onerous to achieve the belief of the Black neighborhood.”

Kenyatta, in the meantime, turned to take a look at Fetterman and stated: “It’s very uncommon we get John at an occasion, and so I’ll say on to the lieutenant governor. For anyone who has minimize a picture as an extremely robust man, you’re so afraid of two little phrases: ‘I’m sorry.’”

Lamb additionally criticized Fetterman for not offering extra particulars about his plan to tax the rich and painted him as unelectable, highlighting his liberal proposals. Kenyatta, in the meantime, portrayed Fetterman as insufficiently liberal.

“I believe what they’re in search of is steadiness and sanity right here,” stated Lamb of voters. “However what they’d get in John as a nominee is somebody who’s ran across the state with Bernie Sanders supporting Medicare for All.”

Kenyatta stated, “He’s on each facet of each subject.”

Fetterman characterised his opponents as disingenuous for spouting falsehoods.

Fetterman and Kenyatta stated they didn’t assist Philadelphia’s masks mandate, which town introduced Thursday evening it might finish. Lamb stated he backed it, and thought well being officers made the choice for the fitting causes.

Fetterman at instances appeared shaky in comparison with Lamb and Kenyatta, who have been extra polished debaters. Rebecca Katz, an adviser to Fetterman, informed reporters afterward within the debate spin room that “his opponents got here off as politicians” and voters “are in search of an actual individual, they’re in search of authenticity.”

“Let’s be clear: John was underneath heavy hearth by his opponents. He didn’t flinch,” added Fetterman spokesperson Joe Calvello. “He informed his story, he informed his background, and informed them why he’s on this, why he obtained into politics within the first place. So regardless of them throwing the whole lot at him, he walked on that stage the winner and he left the winner.”

In latest weeks, the once-tame Democratic major has turned ugly. A professional-Lamb tremendous PAC has additionally been airing a TV advert attacking Fetterman as a “silver-spoon socialist.” An preliminary model of the spot was taken down after Fetterman’s authorized staff complained {that a} declare that he was a “self-described democratic socialist” was false.

The Thursday occasion was the primary televised debate attended by Fetterman. The lieutenant governor has introduced that he’ll seem at three debates earlier than the Might 17 major.