5 Things We Learned From The Second Round Of The #DemDebates
Here's what we learned from the second round of the Democratic debates.
The second set of Democratic debates took place this week in Detroit, Michigan. Over the course of the two-night event, 20 candidates took to the stage to talk about issues, like health care, immigration, climate change and criminal justice. This set of debates wasn’t as dramatic or interesting as the first set in June, but it did help to identify the most viable candidates going forward. It also clearly established that this primary season will be a fight between progressive candidates and more moderate ones, underscoring a deep divide within the Democratic party.
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Here are the important takeaways from this week's debates:
1. The contenders for “most progressive” candidate are Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
Warren (D-MA) and Sanders (I-VT) gave strong performances on night one. They dominated the stage, laying out plans and progressive visions for the country, and were repeatedly attacked by more centrist candidates for having unrealistic plans that are too far left for the average voter.In a must-see exchange between Warren and former Rep. John Delaney (D-MD), Warren put to rest the idea that her plans are impossible. Delaney tried to attack Warren’s health care plan, saying “Democrats win when we run on real solutions, not impossible promises. When we run on things that are workable, not fairy-tale economics.” Warren destroyed Delaney with her comeback, which left him speechless.
2. Former Vice President Joe Biden is still the front-runner in the race—but only barely.
Compared to his last debate performance where he was stunned by attacks from Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Biden did better this time around. He was prepared to challenge the records of Harris and Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), which was a good thing because both went after him forcefully. Yet, Biden still struggles to articulate his message and answer for his past record. When you put Biden side-by-side against other more progressive candidates, he comes across as too moderate and too old-school for the current political climate.
Watch the fierce moment Julián Castro hit Joe Biden over immigration reform. “It looks like one of us has learned the lessons of the past, and one of us hasn't,” Castro said.— POLITICO (@politico) August 1, 2019
Catch up with key moments of Wednesday's Democratic debate: https://t.co/qyhPJwrT2e pic.twitter.com/zjUSwek7qO
3. Author Marianne Williamson deserves credit for having the best answers on reparations out of any of the candidates.
Folks have been saying it's hard to take author and spiritual leader Marianne Williamson seriously in her bid for the presidency, yet she has many thoughtful and honest answers about why reparations are owed to the descendants of slaves.
4. Julián Castro isn’t polling at the top but is making himself stand out in this race.
The former secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro didn’t get as much air time when sharing the stage with Booker, Harris and Biden, but he made his time count. He was masterful in his back-and-forth with Biden on immigration and was the first person to say Eric Garner’s name during the debate.
Appreciate Future Vice President Julian Castro finally saying Eric Garner's name. The 5th anniversary of his murder was this month.— Jamilah King (@jamilahking) August 1, 2019
After two sets of debates, there are still 24 candidates in this race. Only seven have qualified for the next set of debates in September. We shouldn’t have to sit through another five hours of debates with candidates who don’t have the money or poll numbers to win. It’s time to start narrowing the field before the first primaries in early 2020.
Mayor @BilldeBlasio, it's pretty clear you're not going to be president, so we thought we'd give you a chance to choose the gif we use when you inevitably drop out of the race.— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) August 1, 2019
1) Mac and Me pic.twitter.com/7T3vCAlGe9
The next Democratic debates are scheduled for September 12 and 13 in Houston, Texas.