Bruce Hough, Celeste Maloy face off in second GOP debate

Aug 6, 2023, 11:00 AM | Updated: Aug 13, 2023, 7:56 pm

ST. GEORGE, Utah -- Two of the Republican candidates running for Congress in Utah's 2nd District --...

Celeste Maloy, Bruce Hough (Dan Bammes/KSL NewsRadio)

(Dan Bammes/KSL NewsRadio)

ST. GEORGE, Utah — Two of the Republican candidates running for Congress in Utah’s 2nd District — Celeste Maloy and Bruce Hough — met for the second in a series of debates Saturday in St. George.

More than 200 people packed into the Washington County school board offices to hear Hough and Maloy, who agree on many issues. They were asked about what makes them different from Becky Edwards, the third Republican on the ballot. 

More than 200 people attended the second debate for the 2nd Congressional District seat. (Dan Bammes/KSL NewsRadio)

“Well, first thing is Celeste and I are here…” Hough answered to cheers from the audience. “That’s one big difference right there.” 

Maloy and Hough took some digs at each other, with Hough saying Maloy had no excuse for not voting in the last two elections when she was working for Congressman Chris Stewart in Washington.

“We have people in Washington… who are registered to vote in this state all the time. It is not a legitimate excuse to say ‘I was protecting my boss.” Hough said. “First of all, if you’re protecting your boss, you’re not doing your job. You should be protecting the right to vote.”  

Maloy responded by saying Hough doesn’t live in the district boundaries now — his home is in Park City.

Maloy was asked about whether she thought the Justice Department and other federal agencies are being weaponized against Republicans and Christians.

“Before we get to the DOJs being… weaponized against Republicans and Christians, we should get to the DOJs being weaponized against Americans. And it doesn’t matter which side of the aisle you’re on, you should be really offended by that.” 

Hough responded by saying federal bureaucrats should have limited tenure in their jobs.

Becky Edward’s campaign told the Deseret News she’s already participated in two Republican debates. They said she won’t be present for her opponents’ campaign events.


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Bruce Hough, Celeste Maloy face off in second GOP debate