Richard Blumenthal, the Democratic state attorney general, and Linda McMahon, a World Wrestling Entertainment top executive who won the Republican nomination, also took up the issues of healthcare reform, jobs and the minimum wage during a televised hourlong debate, the Hartford Courant said.
Blumenthal repeated an apology for making a misleading statement about his military service.
"I take full responsibility for it," he said. "It was not intentional. But that is no excuse. And I want to say I am sorry, particularly to our veterans and mostly to the veterans of Vietnam."
McMahon tried to depict Blumenthal as a government insider but Blumenthal said he was "proud of my record in public service."
McMahon said WWE has more than 600 employees in Connecticut but Blumenthal said the company had laid off 10 percent of its workforce while collecting $10 million in state tax subsidies.
"She has put profits ahead of people," he said.
Blumenthal attacked McMahon for recent comments in which she wondered whether businesses can afford to pay the minimum wage. He charged she would support reducing the minimum wage but McMahon said "that's a lie" and insisted she does not support reducing it.
Neither candidate committed a major gaffe, the Courant said.
McMahon and Blumenthal are running for the seat being vacated by Sen. Christopher Dodd, a Democrat, who decided not to seek re-election.