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Previously: Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r) and Rep. Joe Wilson (r) in Warrensburg on defense sequestration (September 18, 2012)

Yesterday and today we covered two events on the same campus involving two candidates, the republican incumbent and the Democratic challenger, for the 4th Congressional seat. The trappings of office and the different venues aside, the two events couldn’t have better illustrated the difference between the two candidates.

Cass County Prosecutor Teresa Hensley spoke this afternoon on the campus of the University of Central Missouri as a guest of student Democrats. She made opening remarks and then took questions from the approximately thirty individuals in attendance, including media. Like Vicky Hartzler’s (r) event last night, the editors of the Sedalia and Warrensburg papers and two bloggers, minus the AP reporter, were there to cover the event.

Cass County Prosecutor and 4th Congressional District Democratic Party candidate Teresa Hensley,

speaking in Warrensburg on the campus of the University of Central Missouri on September 19, 2012.

Listening to a question.

Ultimately Teresa Hensley’s (D) event today also addressed the same issue as Vicky Hartzler’s (r) stylized Congressional event, sequestration (automatic cuts) in the defense budget. The big difference was that Teresa Hensley (D), unlike Vicky Hartzler (r), also addressed the other side of the sequestration coin, the mandated cuts to the non military discretionary budget (which includes cuts to Medicare).

And, the difference in process between the two events was stark.

Vicky Hartzler’s (r) event included another member of Congress with her on the stage, was held in an 1100 seat venue with approximately 80 people in attendance, incorporated opening remarks, then prepared remarks by “community leaders”, then a selection of submitted questions and comments pulled from a large basket (there didn’t appear to be a random nature to the selection).

Interestingly enough, in a sort of epistemic closure:

Rep. Vicky Hartzler ‏@RepHartzler

Great Defending the Defenders Listening Session tonight! Thank you to all who came & took part. Everyone agrees we must stop sequestration! 7:35 PM – 18 Sep 12

[emphasis added]

Teresa Hensley’s (D) event was held in a lecture hall with space for about seventy-five people and ended up having approximately thirty people in attendance. Teresa Hensley stood on her own, spoke at length and then took questions. Everyone who wanted to ask a question was given the opportunity to do so. The questions weren’t screened and at least one individual was obviously a supporter of Teresa Hensley’s opponent. Teresa Hensley appeared very comfortable with the give and take.

There is a difference.