VERO BEACH — The three Republican candidates for the state District 80 House seat defended their positions and touted their qualifications Wednesday at a pointed meeting of the Indian River Taxpayers’ Association.The three candidates — incumbent Debbie Mayfield, Art Argenio and Bradley Ward — each offered their Republican credentials in 10-minute speeches, though their contrasts on policy were on full display. Argenio, who spoke first, delivered a passionate review of some of his positions and “common sense” approach to tackling the problems all admitted are prevalent in Tallahassee.He referred to his hero, President Ronald Regan, more than once and said he would reduce taxes and the state budget — mainly by cutting spending. “They (the state Legislature) made Charlie Crist look like a conservative because he had to veto some of what they passed,” he said of the current budget.Argenio ended his speech by espousing his differences with Mayfield on economic issues, most notably her vote for the proposed SunRail train system that was passed during a special legislative session.Mayfield spoke next and joked, “Wow, I’m the devil, I didn’t know that.”She offered a strong defense of her first term in office and cast herself as a fighter, willing to take on leaders for causes important to her constituents. Among the causes was her effort to pass legislation that would have put the Vero Beach Electric utility under the authority of the Public Service Commission.That bill ultimately died in committee because of a lack of support from party leaders, but she said she will continue to bring up the legislation because constituents in Indian River County want relief from their electric bills.”I have spent the last two years fighting for you in Tallahassee,” she said.Ward, a financial planner, spoke of his background as a businessman and the qualities that he can bring to solve the major economic problems the state is facing.”What we need is someone with a business background and business experience,” he said. “We also need proper planning and I am not seeing much of that in Tallahassee today.”Ward said his background in finance gives him the ability to analyze problems and research solutions and it are those qualities that would make him an effective representative.