It’s here: the first Democratic debate of 2020. The seventh Democratic debate will take place tonight, Tuesday, January 14. Tonight’s Democratic debate will be the presidential primary candidates’ last one before the February 3 caucuses, which means it’s their big chance to have a game-changing moment that could boost their campaigns or solidify a front-runner status.
Appropriately enough, the debate is being hosted by The Des Moines Register and CNN, and will take place at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. Front-runners Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, and Elizabeth Warren have been locked in a tight race in Iowa, according to recent polls.
Only six candidates have qualified for the January Democratic debate, making it the smallest one so far. Here’s everything you need to know about the seventh Democratic debate and what to expect.
When is the January Democratic debate?
The debate will start at 6 p.m. PT/9 p.m. ET tonight, Tuesday, January 14. It will run for two hours.
How to watch the January Democratic debate online
The debate will stream online on the Des Moines Register and CNN websites, along with their Android and iOS apps. You’ll also be able to watch it in a player at the top of this post that will go live shortly before the debate begins.
Which candidates have qualified for the debate?
The Democratic National Committee raised its qualification requirements once again for the January debate. Candidates had to receive at least 5% support in four approved national or early state (Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina) polls, or at least 7% in two early state polls. The candidates were also required to have at least 225,000 unique donors and at least 1,000 donors per state in 20 different states.
Here’s who made the cut this time around:
- Former Vice President Joe Biden
- Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont)
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts)
- Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana
- Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota)
- Businessman Tom Steyer
CNN announced the podium order for the debate on Monday morning, based on each candidate’s overall support in qualifying polls. Biden and Sanders, who have the highest average polling numbers, will stand in the center of the stage. Warren will stand to Biden’s left and Buttigieg will be on Sanders’ right. Steyer and Klobuchar will stand on the outer edges.
Notably absent is Andrew Yang, the businessman who has qualified for all of the past debates. Spiritual guru Marianne Williamson, who did not qualify for the December debate, announced on Friday that she would be dropping out of the race.
Also absent is former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is self-funding his campaign and thus does not meet the donor requirements. Bloomberg is largely ignoring most of the early states, hoping instead to have an impressive showing on Super Tuesday.
Who is moderating the debate?
The debate will be moderated by CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer, CNN political correspondent Abby Phillip, and Brianne Pfannenstiel, the chief politics reporter at the Des Moines Register.
What to expect from the January Democratic debate.
Expect for the candidates to really start to go after one another in the hopes of landing a killing blow before the Iowa caucuses. In the past, Sanders has attacked Buttigieg over his lack of experience and support for Medicare for All. Others have gone after Biden’s long track record and claims that he’ll be able to work with Republicans. Biden, Sanders, Buttigieg and Warren are all within a few percentage points of each other in Iowa, according to most polls, so the most competition will likely be between them.
Impeachment will also loom large over the January debate. Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said she’ll finally send the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate this week, which means an impeachment trial could begin shortly.
There’s a small chance each of the senators planning to attend the debate would have to return to Washington, D.C. to attend the impeachment trial instead. Either way, expect impeachment to once again be a major question on the debate stage.
Expect to hear the candidates discuss health care, and tech policy. Many have criticized Facebook over its decision to continue to allow false or misleading political ads on their platform.
When is the next debate?
The eighth Democratic debate will take place in New Hampshire on Friday, February 7, the first of three debates in February. It will be hosted by ABC News, WMUR-TV, and Apple News.
Published at Wed, 15 Jan 2020 00:10:20 +0000