Democratic Debate 2020


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On Jan. 14, 2020 the Democratic Party held the final debate before the Iowa Caucus.

Tanya Hudy, Writer

On Jan. 14, 2020, the Democratic Party held a presidential primary debate at Drake University in Des Moines, the seventh of 12 Democratic primary debates for the 2020 election. Six out of 14 candidates qualified for the debate: Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, Tom Steyer, and Elizabeth Warren. Candidates had until Jan. 10 to qualify, a process that entailed getting 225,000 unique donors and at least 5 percent support in four eligible polls or 7 percent support in two eligible state-level polls. The debate was broadcasted by CNN and moderated by Wolf Blitzer, Abby Phillip, and Brianne Pfannenstiel.

The debate began with the simple question: Why are you the most qualified person to be Commander-in-Chief?  This opened the discussion to the coverage of a multitude of topics including foreign policy, trade, electability, healthcare, childcare, impeachment, and climate change. Each candidate had 75 seconds to answer questions, 45 seconds for responses and rebuttals, and 15 seconds for clarifications.

NPR had discussed possible points of conflict in the hours leading up to the debate, the most important of which regarding statements Sen. Sanders said in 2018. Information leaked recently reported that Sanders allegedly said during a private meeting that a woman cannot win in 2020. Sanders denied the allegations when asked.

“As a big fan of Bernie Sanders, I feel like if what he says is true isn’t right,” junior Missael Morales said. “He should have kept his mouth closed instead of starting more conflict with people who oppose [him].”

Climate change has been a big factor in influencing many people’s views on presidential candidates. The Australia fires have been a big talk amongst the people. Many candidates have expressed their concerns and opinions on the topic. Some of these candidates have received backlash or support for what they are vouching for. Mayor Pete Buttigieg explained how the wildfires are getting bigger and hotter which can create thunderstorms and tornadoes. He also expressed his views on climate change, saying that it a key element because of the increasing temperatures.

“Climate change would influence my vote if candidates would talk about more specific things such as proposing a law to limit oil resources,” senior Chantal Camus. “I would also want them to talk about an effective object that will affect the economy and big cities.”

This was the final debate before the Iowa caucuses, which will take place on Feb. 3. The Iowa caucus allows voters to vote for Democratic and Republican candidates to get a better look at who is favored to become president for the next four years.