State Comptroller candidates were arguing more about who was more independent of their parties' leaders at a recent debate.

Comptroller candidates Susana Mendoza and incumbent Leslie Geissler Munger spent an hour sparring in front of the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board. The office is up for special election this November due to the death of Judy Baar-Topinka. Both candidates tried their best to tie their opponent to the state's poor fiscal climate. Mendoza, the current Chicago City Clerk and ex-lawmaker, tried to pin the budget impasse on the Republican incumbent. "Never in the history of our state, have we gone without a budget until now," she told the board. "The only new variable to this equation is this current administration."

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Munger reminded the board that Mendoza was complicit to years of imbalanced budgets, reminding the board of the now Chicago City Clerk's tenure as a Democrat lawmaker. "She has her fingerprints all over this. She voted for every one of the tax increases, the unbalanced budgets, the pension holidays, and the borrowing against the pension funds," she said.

Growing agitated, Mendoza said the incumbent had no experience.

"I have a record to speak to, which you don't know about since you've never had to actually vote for anything in your life. You were appointed. I was elected. I've been elected eight times. How about you?"

Green Party Candidate Tim Curtin and Libertarian Party candidate Claire Ball were also in attendance.

(Copyright WBGZ /