Many thought former senator and Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee delivered a stinker performance in the Democratic primary debate last night, particularly when he stumbled over explaining his Glass-Steagall vote.
“Glass-Steagall was my very first vote,” Chafee said. “I’d just arrived, my dad had died in office.” He was appointed to his dad’s vacant Senate seat in 1999.
When CNN’s Anderson Cooper pressed him on the answer, Chafee noted, “I think you’re being a little rough.”
But Chafee said today that the problem is he didn’t get enough camera time.
That complaint was voiced by former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) several times during the debate. Webb and Chafee were on the ends of the five-candidate stage.
“I was certainly unpleased with the amount of time allocated. I had nine minutes out of a two-hour debate. And there was some presumption that there would be a fair allocation of time. That didn’t turn out to be accurate,” Chafee told CNN today.
He called it “one indication of how the establishment does not want to hear the anti-war vote.”
“They — they just gave me nine minutes out of a two-hour debate. And it’s the same thing elsewhere getting into the media, whether it’s the Sunday shows or the like, it’s — I have a feeling that the establishment doesn’t want to hear an anti-war voice.”
Chafee admitted he’s only raised around $30,000 for his campaign, but he “came into the race knowing the reality that Secretary Clinton was going to take all the money essentially.”
“I’m not raising much money. But I do have a budget and I’m living within it,” he said.
Chafee said his motivator to keep running “is what I care about is happening in the Middle East and across the world with the wars… I want to continue to bring up the issues about what we’re doing that it’s going to affect future generations. I have three children and I care what’s happening and I want to talk about the issues and I want to be a voice for prosperity through peace. I want to be talking about bring the different combatants to the peace table and I’m still looking forward to that opportunity that didn’t occur last night with only nine minutes out of the two hours.”
And, he said, anti-war Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) just isn’t anti-war enough.
“Senator Sanders does not talk about what’s happening in the Middle East and across North Africa at the times I’ve heard him. He does mention it, but very, very fleetingly,” Chafee said. “I’m in it as far as I can continue to raise these issues. They’re important and I feel strongly about that.”