PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The three opponents of Rhode Island Democratic gubernatorial candidate Frank Caprio have criticized him in a televised debate for saying President Barack Obama can "shove it," with one calling him a "knucklehead" and another saying he acted like a "petulant child."
Tuesday's debate was the first for the candidates since Caprio said Monday that Obama could "take his endorsement and really shove it" after he learned the president wouldn't endorse anyone in the race.
Republican John Robitaille (ROH'-bih-ty) said Caprio's response wasn't the one of a governor but was immature or of a "petulant child." Moderate Party candidate Ken Block called Caprio a "knucklehead."
Independent Lincoln Chafee (CHAY'-fee) endorsed Obama in 2008 and said the comments were unfortunate.
Caprio maintains he never asked for Obama's endorsement.
The debate was co-sponsored by WPRI-TV and The Providence Journal.