Topics covered in the intense encounter included inflation, abortion, voting rights, gun violence, immigration, and foreign policy.
Demings, a three-term congresswoman and former Orlando police chief, characterized Rubio as a “serial liar.” On the topic of abortion rights, Rubio said he supports bills that provide some exceptions in the aftermath of the Supreme Court's decision in June to overturn Roe v. Wade. Demings hit back hard in her rebuttal.
"What we know is that the senator supports no exceptions," Demings responded. "He can make his mouth say anything today. He is good at that, by the way. What day is it and what is Marco Rubio saying?"
“We are not going back, senator, no matter how obsessed you are with a woman’s body and her right to choose,” she continued. “We are not going back to a time where women are treated like second-class citizens or like property.”
Demings also accused Rubio of not doing enough to change laws to prevent mass shootings that took place at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando in 2016 and at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland in 2018.
"How long will you watch people being gunned down in first grade, fourth grade, high school, college, church, synagogue, grocery store, movie theater, a mall, and a nightclub and do nothing?" Demings said.
Rubio, a two-time Senator and a one-time presidential candidate said that the legislation that Demings supports would not have prevented the mass shootings.
"Everything she is for would have done nothing to stop any of those shootings," responded Rubio. "Every one of these shooters would have passed the background check that she keeps insisting on. No one here is in favor of mass shootings and violence."
Rubio was also critical of Demings for supporting what he called the "agenda" of President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
"In the two terms I've been there, no U.S. senator has gotten more done than I have," he said. "The only thing she does is vote 100% with Pelosi."
Demings is hoping to pull an upset by unseating Rubio, which would make her the first Black woman to become a U.S. Senator from the state of Florida.
According to the latest polls, Rubio has a six-point advantage over Demings at 47 percent to 41 percent.