YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WDTN) — Candidates vying for Ohio’s U.S. Senate seat took the debate stage for the second and final time Monday night in Youngstown.

Republican JD Vance and Democrat Tim Ryan battled over ways to improve the country’s inflation, gun control policies and more.

During their second debate, Vance and Ryan discussed multiple issues and at times, there were interruptions, and even perceived personal attacks. One of the most contentious moments of the night surrounded the topic of immgration, with Ryan accusing Vance of aligning himself with politicians who aim to stoke racist views.

“You’ll accuse me, the father of three beautiful bi-racial babies, of engaging in racism, we’re sick of it,” said Vance.

In their second debate, the candidates discussed a number of topics including the country’s inflation crisis, gun control and Ohio’s legislation on abortion. According to our exclusive Emerson College and The Hill Poll, the majority of ohioans oppose the state’s current abortion law and are looking for change. 

“They want to have a national abortion ban, they’re not happy with people having to go to Illinois, they want people to get a passport and go to Canada, it’s the largest government overreach in our lifetime,” said Ryan.

However both candidates agreed that more needs to be done in Ohio’s schools to keep students safe, each suggesting changes to House Bill 99, which allows teachers to carry a firearm with 24 hours of training.

“School teachers will have to shoot in that environment with all those kids running around, that is somebody that needs to be very well trained and more than 24 hours,” said Ryan.

“A very important part of reducing crime in schools and our streets is making sure we lock up violent criminals,” said Vance.

The debate turned to policing strategies for Ohio’s communities including police accountability. Vance argued that many strategies are already in place to ensure ‘the good cops do their jobs and the bad cops don’t’ while also criticizing the 2020 protests sparked by the death of George Floyd.

On the other hand, Ryan says policing is a problem across the nation and says departments must be stripped down to their foundation to start a process of healing.