January Democratic Debate: Seeking Someone of Unimpeachable Credentials

Vagabond

Well-Known Member
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14,066
Sanders is not doing well tonight. He wouldn't explain how his Medicare-for-All proposal would be financed, and the Klobuchar pounced on him, saying that (1) he should be able to do that and (2) there isn't enough support even within the Democratic Party to get his proposal into law.
 

caseyedwards

Well-Known Member
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13,358
Sanders is not doing well tonight. He wouldn't explain how his Medicare-for-All proposal would be financed, and the Klobuchar pounced on him, saying that (1) he should be able to do that and (2) there isn't enough support even within the Democratic Party to get his proposal into law.
Her roulette analogy was a little clunky though!!
 

alchemy void

#justice4dasa
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20,860
This was a :blah: debate. Holy shit. I couldn't keep focused, and found work infinitely more interesting.

February 3rd cannot come soon enough.

Quick thoughts:

Warren wins, easily, no question. Strong and focused and energetic.
Biden and Buttigeg had strong closing statements, but were mostly meh.
Bernie, whatever. I'll never be a fan.
I kind of don't actively dislike Steyer anymore.
Klobuchar was an unfocused mess. Surprising, considering she was so strong the past two debates, but this was so uninspired. I wanted her to lay into Pete again. :drama: Constantly going overtime got old fast.

CNN kind of sucks. I liked the moderator from the Des Moines Register.
 

once_upon

New condo owner
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12,852
I nodded off mid debate so my observations are not based upon the whole debate
Amy K started to irritate me by constantly going over her time and ignoring the moderators.
Tom S seemed to get less time than others
Pete B definitely was 4th in overall debate
Bernie S seemed to have gotten lost in his ramblings
Elizabeth W did address the woman cant win issue without directly calling out Bernie, she let the moderators do that. I liked her answers on the variety of questions
Joe B seemed more on track and no major gaffes.
Like I said I nodded off but would list the winners in this order

Biden, Warren, tie Sanders/Buttigieg, Amy K, Tom S.
 

clairecloutier

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9,815
We only saw the first two-thirds of the debate, but I actually thought most of the candidates did quite well. Seeing them up there, and hearing them, it was a good reminder that any of them (even probably Steyer) would be far, far better than the current occupant. I thought Warren handled the questions about the Bernie controversy quite well. I noticed Bernie had no real response when asked about the cost of his plans, including M4A.
 

BlueRidge

AYS's snark-sponge
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54,276
As always, I didn't watch--I wouldn't be able to sleep for thinking if I did.

A quick look at the morning media analysis doesn't really show any losers, except maybe Klobuchar only because she didn't break out and needs to.

Looks like no real impact from this debate other than to somewhat calm down the Warren-Sanders conflict.

It seems to me what these debates confirm is that all the candidates are capable. Voters either have to vote for who they like, vote on issues, or look in their crystal ball and vote for who it tells them can win against Trump.
 

agalisgv

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I thought Buttigieg did the worst and lost ground during the debate. Steyer’s repeated, “I agree with (candidate’s name) about...”, left the impression of might as well support that other candidate then. He came across as not ready for prime time.

Biden was detached, stumbling, and low energy for much of the evening. His closing statement was the only time he seemed to come to life. Klobuchar was strong and steady throughout. But something about the timbre of her voice comes off as nervous and scared. The references to poker chips didn’t land, but she had a strong electability argument, and came off the best in balancing policy vision with fiscal and congressional constraints.

Sanders’s lack of specificity in his proposals and ability to pay for them became more accentuated as the debate wore on. He didn’t stumble, but seemed less substantive than either Warren or Klobuchar. Warren had the strongest night—she dominated on the gender question, and she and Klobuchar were so much stronger in specifics. The one exception is in foreign policy where Biden seemed substantive. She and Buttigieg made the argument about judgement over experience, but their fluency in discussing foreign policy leaves much to be desired. Kudos for the moderators in stressing that this debate tho.

The problem for Biden is anyone who’s been awake during the 2000’s knows Biden has been on the wrong side of every major foreign policy decision, and now he’s lying about it. Sanders’ critique of Biden alluded to that, but was too gentle to drive the point home. That’s a real problem because the reason the other candidates didn’t press Biden is because they don’t feel as confident on foreign policy, and don’t go there as a result. But in a general election, Trump will go there, and what is Biden’s strength in a primary relative to the other candidates will be a weakness in the general.

Overall Warren had the best night followed by Klobuchar. I thought Buttigieg and Steyer looked unserious in comparison. But none of them came off as able to go toe to toe against how Trump would engage them. I thought it was a huge strategic mistake not to go after Biden the whole debate.
 

Vagabond

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14,066
I generally agree with agalisgv's analysis, but I think Klobuchar harmed herself by persistently talking even after the second time warning. She already has a perception problem about how she deals with aides, and her performance last night made me wonder whether she would even listen to advisors who disagreed with her.

Also, as I said last night, Sanders has now given himself a credibility problem.
 

agalisgv

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27,040
Not getting as much media play, but thought the exchanges around trade were interesting. Only Sanders said he wouldn’t support the USMCA. Every candidate acknowledged it was a significant improvement over NAFTA (which Biden strongly supported—something only Sanders pointed out along with Biden’s support for the TPP). Biden responded there would never be a trade deal that would live up to what Sanders wants, thus implying Sanders would effectively become an economic isolationist. But Sanders was on solid ground when he tied Biden to the decision to approve most favored trade status to China and the concomitant loss of millions of jobs to China. Sanders also had the best retort to Warren when she said she’d approve USMCA now, but then revise it to be something better. Sanders said these are complicated pieces of legislation, and you’re not going to get another bite of the apple after passing this. You could see same applying to argument around M4A.

Anyhow, this, along with some other comments (eg. Steyer’s quip that the US has gotten MENA foreign policy decisions consistently wrong over the past twenty years, Buttigieg critiquing the trade deals of the 90’s, etc), show vulnerabilities in the legacies of both Obama and Clinton, and the candidates’ willingness to run against those legacies once you strip away the Dem Presidents’ names connected to those policy decisions. That will be a big issue in the general.
 

clairecloutier

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The only real issue in the general election should be Trump and the Republicans, as they continue to destroy our country's credibility, alliances, norms of governing, moral standing (family separation, etc.), protections against poisoning the environment, and the general public's faith in the government and the media in general.

Everything else is secondary.

Yes, the Democratic nominee needs to have his/her own positive proposals, which will be closer to or farther from the Clinton or Obama legacies, depending on the candidate. But the real question for every voter is whether they accept or reject the policies of Trump and the Republicans.
 

FunnyBut

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I’m probably the only one who thinks Warren didn’t win, at least not for me. Going after Bernie as anti-woman is a cheap shot, Bernie is as progressive as they come (and I’m not even a Bernie supporter). Her answer was slick and smart, she is an excellent debater, but comes off as politically pandering. And now she’s back pedaling on Medicare-for-All after it was her centerpiece a few debates ago. Who are you , Elizabeth Warren? I’m not a Bernie supporter but I respect that he truly has a stand and a vision. Despite her quick mind and eloquence Warren doesn’t come off as trustworthy, Sanders does. I also didn’t buy her argument as being a party Uniter, she may be less divisive than AOC, but I can’t think of who else.

Last two debates I’ve been really impressed with Klobuchar. Had she been Obama’s pick for VP all those years ago, surely she’d be the front runner, Biden would have left before Harris. Biden is an awful debater, though this showing was better than his 1st two and it may be ‘enough’, even it wasn’t good. I try to console myself by thinking one can be a terrible debater and still a decent president.

Mayor Pete needed to be impactful, and he wasn’t.
 
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BlueRidge

AYS's snark-sponge
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Bernie is "progressive as they come" so therefore cannot be sexist doesn't compute for me. I've known plenty of sexist progressive men. Sanders acknowledged that his 2016 campaign organization discriminated against women and in some ways was a hostile atmosphere for women workers. He may have tried to change that this time but the notion that he simply can't be sexist doesn't hold water.

If we are going to hold Warren to account on her campaigns actions vs Bernie, I don't get why we wouldn't hold Bernie's campaign to account for its attempts to paint Warren as an elitist. That's a really dishonest tactic on their part IMO and it doesn't build confidence in Bernie that he had the same response basically "I didn't know about that" to this revelation as he did to the revelations of sexism in his 2016 campaign.

I think Bernie gets a pass as a lovable old man that Warren never gets. And I'm rather sick of it.
 

mrinalini

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1,227
I've watched the previous debates in their entirety but not this time because I don't think I could take getting any more disheartened over Senator Warren, so I'm pleasantly surprised to see that even sources which are normally very biased against her had to admit she won last night. #NeverWarren and #WarrenIsASnake are also trending on Twitter now, so if I ever needed further evidence never to support Sanders except if he's in the general, I now have it - a lot of his supporters are on the same level of disgusting as Trumpers, and anyone who engenders that kind of support should not be president, IMO.

And Sanders is the cause of this spat worsening because he is essentially calling Warren and her staff liars - I read that she was forced to put out a statement because Sanders had right off the bat forcefully accused her staffers of lying instead of choosing to be more diplomatic about the whole thing ("Maybe there was a misunderstanding"). Straight into the gutter just like he did with Hillary, so said one of Warren's supporters, and ITA.
 

FunnyBut

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I’ll admit I have a bias against Warren. Too many times I’ve seen her grandstanding against Obama, CEOs in Senate hearings, grandstanding for the sake of grandstanding, pandering out the cheap shots not so unlike Trump, albeit for a very different position.
I will take your word that Bernie has had gender equality issues in his campaign, though I wasn’t personally aware of it. While I agree anyone can/should be challenged for sexism, the motive behind this particular challenge was political gain, not equal rights, and one shouldn’t hide from one’s own campaign strategy. I agree Warren is definitely not an elitist. I don’t want either of them for president, but if I was drowning I’d want Bernie to save me.
 

BlueRidge

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I will take your word that Bernie has had gender equality issues in his campaign, though I wasn’t personally aware of it.
This tells you everything you need to know about how far we still have to go. Not meaning that you didn't know about it, but that it was so little covered by the media. It was extraordinarily significant but barely registered.

Nothing has felt worse to me than to see the left doing its same old thing of putting issues of sexism aside for larger things. And I mean women doing this, like AOC. This has always been the message of the left as Bernie Sanders has known it: sexism, women's problems, these are secondary issues we have to put aside for the good of the cause.

That of course has been changing but when the left chooses as its leader someone as old-style as Sanders it sends us backwards. Unfortunately young women just haven't experienced the history. And unfortunately they are guaranteeing that they are going to experience it in the coming struggles by going along with this situation.

The left wants women to subordinate their concerns for the good of the cause, which today is Bernie Sanders campaign. Same old same old.

Am I angry? I'd say, yes just a bit.
 

PRlady

Nerdy flack
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33,606
I have a bias for Warren but up til last night I thought she was too stuck on her talking points. This was her best debate and although she behaves impeccably, I can see her utterly clobbering Trump next fall in a debate. I was happy with the results.
 

snoopy

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11,594
None of them are the best debaters. Sanders and warren are probably the best of the group. Whom ever gets the nomination needs to have debate prep and mock debates with a mock trump starting on day 1 of their campaign. They need to train for it like an Olympian.

40% of the country votes for republicans and 40% of the country votes for democrats. The swing 20 votes personality.
 

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