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Missouri auditor candidates exchange harsh words at debate

Missouri Auditor Nicole Galloway.

ST. LOUIS (AP) – Democratic Missouri Auditor Nicole Galloway and her Republican opponent have exchanged heated words at a debate, including one response that drew a gasp from some in the crowd.

Galloway, Republican Saundra McDowell and three other candidates spoke Friday at a candidate forum during the Missouri Press Association’s convention.

Galloway said McDowell can’t handle her own finances and has lied about her residency, saying she hasn’t lived in Missouri long enough to run. She accused McDowell of being so “financially compromised” that “she might be willing to accept dark money in exchange for looking the other way in audits.”

McDowell responded by accusing Galloway of failing to perform timely audits in some counties, saying if she’s not a watchdog, “she’s just a dog,” a comment that led to an audible gasp.