Carnahan, Clay in heated debate over rent-to-own businesses -

Carnahan, Clay in heated debate over rent-to-own businesses

ST. LOUIS ( – In an unusual race, two democrats, both incumbents, are now fighting for one seat in congress.

Monday Lacy Clay and Russ Carnahan faced each other in a debate on the radio and traded barbs.

News 4 focused on the issue of rent-to-own businesses.

One of the more hotly contested exchanges occurred over house bill 15-88, a proposal that targets rent-to-own stores.

“This is a bill that for the last four years Congressman Carnahan has co sponsored it was only 60 days he removed his name from the bill so he could use it in attack ads against me,” said Clay.

News 4 did some checking, and sure enough Carnahan did take his name off that bill in April, a bill that has endorsements from democrats and republicans.

But Carnahan says the bill, which aims to force rent-to-own businesses to disclose more to the consumer doesn’t protect consumers enough.

“This is not good enough,” he said. “The bill has too many loopholes and doesn’t let states set higher standards. And why hasn’t Congressman Clay taken his name off the bill?”

News 4 read through the bill and found there is in fact a provision that does cancel out any state law that is inconsistent with the bill.

Carnahan went further to accuse Clay of being in the pocket of pay day loan businesses.

“It prevents states from having stronger disclosures and that’s why we need the initiative petition and Congressman Clay will you campaign against predatory lenders trying to kill it?” asked Carnahan.

I certainly will, I have never, wait a minute; I have never sided with the payday loan industry.”

They ended up agreeing there.

They also shook hands at one point, which was notable considering how nasty this has been.

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