"To have somebody besmirch me like this in a Republican Primary, this is absolutely outrageous," said Assemblyman Ron Castorina Jr.
Castorina was on defense from the start of Thursday's debate held in the NY1 studios. He vehemently denied his opponent's claim that he was arrested in Rhode Island back in 2001.
"A booking date indicates an arrest. If you run a criminal background check, it shows he was arrested," said Candidate Janine Materna.
Materna provided NY1 with a copy of a background check her campaign obtained through a website, but it clearly reads the offense was speeding and that it was handled by the Rhode Island Traffic Tribunal, which only deals with civil matters.
"Yeah, you know what, I got a speeding ticket when I was 21 years old. I never got arrested," said Castorina.
A spokesman for Rhode Island's court system backs up the Assemblyman's claim.
"I find nothing in our records for Ronald Castorina, said Craig Berke, Assistant State Court Administrator for the Rhode Island Judiciary. "In a motor vehicle stop that involved speeding as the only violation, there would have been no arrest," he added.
The remainder of the debate followed a narrative that has played out during the campaign.
Castorina criticized Materna for her time as a Democrat, accusing her of switching parties only to have a chance in the heavily Republican district.
"You do not become a Republican by marking off an x in a box on a voter registration card," said Castorina.
Materna stepped up her charge that he's a carpetbagger.
"I didn't just move into the district less than 30 months ago, friends with the right people, get the tap on the shoulder, kiss the ring you're the next person in line. I have lived here my entire life," she said.
The two do though agree when it comes to several of the big issues facing the district.
Both said they opposed opening a homeless shelter on the South Shore.
They also agreed more needs to be done to fight the Heroin epidemic.
Then there was this in the lightning round, which requires one word answers.
"If Former Congressman Michael Grimm runs again, would you support him?" asked NY1 Staten Island Borough Reporter Amanda Farinacci. Both answered yes.
They also both said they supported gay marriage.
With no Democrat in the race, the winner of Tuesday's primary is virtually a lock to win the Assembly seat in November.
The debate can be seen in its entirety on NY1 on Staten Island on Friday at 6:30 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
It will also be available on NY1.com