Former State Senator Hiram Monserrate and Assemblyman Jose Peralta had their first, and probably only, face-off before the March 16th special election for state Senate. WNYC's Ailsa Chang was in Jackson Heights last night to hear the candidates answer questions from voters.
REPORTER: All night long the crowd heckled Monserrate. At one point, he asked for someone to be removed or he wouldn't continue.
MONSERRATE: We're not doing this. We're not doing this. Eject him. Disorderly conduct.
REPORTER: There were few key policy differences between the two candidates, except gay marriage. Peralta supports it. Monserrate does not. Both want to see more schools, more green space and more oversight of the MTA. The real issue of the night was character. Peralta kept bringing up Monserrate's conviction for assaulting his girlfriend and Monserrate told him to move on. He says one blemish on his record doesn't cancel out 25 years of public service.