NBC 7 San Diego hosted its second televised mayoral debate Sunday night and the tone was much sharper than any one before.

It included the best live exchange of the entire election: a three-and-a-half-minute lunge and parry on Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher’s switch from Republican to independent.

I’ve linked to the segment below, but first some context. By all accounts, Fletcher has surged since his declaration of independence and has put himself in striking distance of making the general election. And Republican District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis’ campaign hasn’t taken off.

Dumanis showed a much different side Sunday night. She took swings whenever she had a chance at Fletcher and Democratic Congressman Bob Filner. At one point, I tweeted that Dumanis was “Mayor of Feisty City.” Her persistent attacks on Fletcher sparked this moment and Republican Councilman Carl DeMaio joined in. (Bonus points to DeMaio for using the term: “power barons.”)

Fast-forward the video to the 10 minute, 17 second mark for the beginning of the exchange.

View more videos at: http://nbcsandiego.com.

This segment revealed in less than four minutes the state of the campaign.

DeMaio is attempting to knock out Fletcher now so he won’t have to face him in the general, an effort that includes sending a blizzard of mail to Democrats questioning Fletcher’s liberal credentials. Fletcher is attempting to argue for post-partisan consensus by attacking others for being partisan. Dumanis is attempting to pick off Fletcher’s moderate supporters by expressing what appears to be righteous indignation at Fletcher’s pitch. And Filner, who didn’t join in on the scrum, is attempting to let others do the attack work for him.

You can watch the full video of the debate by segments, which also included a discussion of the candidates’ ideas on K-12 education and Chargers stadium talk on NBC 7 San Diego’s website.

Liam Dillon is a news reporter for Voice of San Diego. He covers San Diego City Hall, the 2012 mayor’s race and big building projects. What should he write about next?

Please contact him directly at liam.dillon@voiceofsandiego.org or 619.550.5663.

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Liam Dillon

Liam Dillon was formerly a senior reporter and assistant editor for Voice of San Diego. He led VOSD’s investigations and wrote about how regular people...

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