SECOND DEMOCRATIC DEBATE LINE UP
Tuesday, July 30 – from left of screen
Democratic presidential hopefuls are gathering for their second doubleheader of primary debates Tuesday and Wednesday in Detroit, straddling the line between their pwn policy prescriptions and the thorny question of how to deal with President Donald Trump.
Ten candidates are onstage at the Fox Theater, gearing up to blast Trump’s recent descent into racially charged taunts while also fearing missed chances to set themselves apart on healthcare, foreign policy, the domestic economy and the environment.
The president has spent recent weeks sparring with a quartet of young lawmakers, all of them women of color – and branding the majority-black city of Baltimore as a rat-infested sewer so he can blame a Democratic foil for allowing his congressional district to go to the dogs.
While the foes to his left race to condemn him in Detroit, they also have to find positive messages that will resonate as the stakes grow higher.
With each successive series of debates the qualifications get tighter, requiring higher minimum poll results and ever-more grassroots donors.
For some debaters seeking safe harbor in a contentious primary race, Tuesday and Wednesday provide what might be their last chance to avoid being swept out to sea.
Standing at center stage on Tuesday are the two most liberal contenders, Senators Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.
As Warren has gained ground, Sanders has begun to fade – reminding some political observers of the self-avowed Democratic socialist’s fade in 2016 at the hands of Hillary Clinton.
The first night of the second Democratic debate kicked off Tuesday in Detroit. On the stage from left to right are: Marianne Williamson, Tim Ryan, Amy Klobuchar, Pete Buttigieg, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Beto O’Rourke, John Hickenlooper, John Delaney, Steve Bullock
Standing at center stage on Tuesday are the two most liberal contenders, Senators Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts
More moderate candidates, including former Texas Rep Beto O’Rourke and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, aim to make the case that in a general election, centrists have a better chance of knocking off a president whose rhetoric and policy choices have strayed rightward.
Former Colorado governor John Hickenlooper could assert himself as a strident anti-liberal on Tuesday, renewing his argument that progressivism is bad for the Democratic Party’s brand.
South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg and new-age author Marianne Williamson are wild cards.
Wednesday night’s debate will offer the possibility of a rematch of last month’s clash between former Vice President Joe Biden and California Sen Kamala Harris, who went toe-to-toe in the first debate over busing and desegregation issues that date to when Harris was a child in California and Biden was a youngish senator.
While CNN drew lots to determine which candidates would debate on which night, the White House hopefuls have been drawing up policy prescriptions.
Warren rolled out a trade policy package on Monday that includes a nine-condition litmus test for future US trading partners, including an end to subsidizing fossil fuels.
She took a page from Trump’s 2016 playbook that won over rust-belt workers in job-starved swing states, leaving the possibility of tough tariffs on the table
Harris published a healthcare plan on Monday that stops short of the ‘Medicare for All’ proposal that the party’s left wing favors. Her conception of a health system reboot includes a role for private insurers, and a slower phase-in period of a decade.
Host network CNN vowed to punish any candidate who interrupts too much with a loss of talk time. Moderators Jake Tapper, Dana Bash and Don Lemon are seen at the start of the debate
Trump’s re-election campaign and a deep-pocketed organization determined to see him impeached are running dueling television ads during both nights of debates this week.
‘Need to Impeach,’ an advocacy group funded by San Francisco billionaire Tom Steyer, is airing a 30-second takedown of the president based on four moments from the congressional hearings that featured former special counsel Robert Mueller last week.
The Trump campaign’s entry in the air war is an ad that uses a made-for-TV moment from the first debates to mock Democrats as ‘all the same’ – showing 10 of them raising their hands to signify that they would give illegal immigrants access to a taxpayer-funded healthcare system.
Both spots are running on CNN and MSNBC. The president’s ad will also be shown on Fox News. His campaign placed full-page color ads in both of Detroit’s daily newspapers on Tuesday.
The anti-Trump ad buy is part of an estimated $74million dollars of spending by Need to Impeach in the past two years.
It’s billed as ‘not supported by any candidate or candidate committee,’ but Steyer, the founder and bankroller of Need to Impeach, is himself a Democratic presidential candidate.
He won’t be on stage this week. The super-wealthy Californian’s campaign is raising money so he can attract enough individual donors qualify in the future.
CNN’s technological marvel of a stage set took more than 100 people eight days to assemble, according to the network’s vice president of special events, Kate Lunger.
The network’s production involves 25 cameras, more than 500 theater lights, and 40,000 pounds of equipment shipped in 110 crates and pallets.
It took nine 53-foot semi-trucks to haul it all to Detroit.
A pro-impeachment group founded and bankrolled by Billionaire Tom Steyer, a Democratic presidential candidate without enough popular support so far to qualify for debates, is running its own ads blasting Trump
The president’s ad paints Democrats as ‘all the same,’ showing 10 of them raising their hands in the first primary debate when asked if they would propose taxpayer-funded healthcare for illegal immigrants as president
The Trump campaign ad slapped a ‘SOCIALIST’ label over South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s photo, and branded Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren a ‘RADICAL’