Democratic Debates

09:15am | 11/20/2019 updated
Daniel Tompkins

Was hoping for live comments along with the NBC live stream— disabled on YouTube 👎. Take part in the discussion below, or find the subscribe button to get an email invitation for l00sed.slack.com

Also, for anyone who wants to know the technical details and stats for candidates and debates, I just found an extremely useful page on Wikipedia that has a ton of info on polls, schedules, etc.

Episode 1, The Thunderdome
Miami, Florida — NBC — 6/26

Update: I am switching out live stream links with recorded debates after each event.

Episode 2, There Can Be Only Ten?
Miami, Florida — NBC — 6/27

July 30th. The second round of debates will be hosted by CNN. According to a story by CBS, candidates must have either:

"65,000 donors to their campaign, with at least 200 donors in 20 different states, or obtain at least 1 percent in three polls recognized as legitimate by the committee. If more than 20 candidates qualify for the debate, the DNC has said it will choose participants with a methodology that gives primacy to candidates meeting both thresholds, followed by the highest polling average, followed by the most unique donors."

Making these milestones is extremely important if the candidate is going to succeed! This is the second Democratic primary debate (of 12 total). So far, only 14 candidates have qualified in both areas. Support your chosen candidates and check back here on July 30th for live debate chat.

Episode 3, Qualifying Rounds
Detroit, Michigan — CNN — 7/30

July 31st. Debate. Detroit. But will it really happen? Who knows. The only thing that people can actually watch from the debate last night is CNN's own short clips and coverage. At least if I'd had a TV tuner when I was forced to watch the first two debates on MSNBC, I might have been able to view an official Democratic Party primary debate without paying for cable.

At LEAST MSNBC had the courtesy to upload the recorded debates to YouTube. This full coverage (embedded above) was recorded and uploaded by a public citizen of the Web. If you find links to the full debate coverage, post them below! What else is the Internet for...?

Stay tuned for the second Detroit debate coverage tonight, and invite your friends to start a discussion below.

Episode 4, The Secret CNN Debates Pt. 2
Detroit, Michigan — CNN — 7/31

If ten or fewer candidates meet the DNC's criteria, the next debate will be a one-night affair— set for September 12th. I'm so thankful to the YouTube pirates who've recorded the debates and made them available to a broader public. Poor VP Biden looked so upset as his fellow candidates tore him up in the debates last night and the night prior; but he's still winning in the polls as the "most likely to take on Trump".

According to an article on the NYT website, "candidates will need to have 130,000 unique donors and register at least 2 percent support in four polls" by August 28th. So far, Biden, Booker, Buttigieg, Harris, O'Rourke, Sanders, and Warren have secured a spot; but Yang, Castro, and Klobuchar are behind. ABC will be televising the Houston debates. Once again, stay tuned for livestream and invite people to the discussion below! Thanks.

Episode 5, Who's Left for Houston?
Houston, Texas — ABC — 9/12

A lot has happened since the Houston debate. Bernie is out of the hospital after suffering a heart attack. He received two stents to relieve a blocked artery, but announced that he's not giving up on his campaign.

Meanwhile, former Vice President Joe Biden has been struggling to defend himself for allegedly using the power of his office to force out a Ukranian prosecutor who was investigating an oligarch linked to Burisma, the Ukrainian energy company where Hunter [Biden's son] sat on the board.

President Trump, who is now (more than ever) under threat of impeachment, has been accused of using his own position as President to persuade Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate the Bidens. It seems this was a move to throw shade on one of his biggest political opponents in the upcoming election.

Lastly, Democratic hopeful, Tulsi Gabbard threatened to boycott tonight's debate. She argued that the criteria set by the DNC (in order to be eligible for each debate) is arbitrary and biased; and that the debates are akin to a reality TV series. I whole-heartedly agree.

I want to say this was before she met the requirements for tonight's debate... Incidentally, she has now met the requirements, and recently Tweeted that she will in fact be participating in the debate (we'll see if the moderators ask her about this). It's good to have principles, but the reality is that skipping out on a televised debate isn't going to get you elected. Sad, but true.

Tonight's debates are again hosted by CNN, and are scheduled to begin at 8 ET. As always, I invite you to leave your comments below and watch the debate along with me. I'll be heading down to Shadyside's The Urban Tap to have a drink while I watch on their big screens!

Part 1
Part 2

Episode 6, CNN: The Last Supper
Westerville, Ohio — CNN — 10/15

Tonights debate happens mid-impeachment. Biden has been called out numerous times by Republics in this and last weeks public hearings. Republicans say that Ukrainian President Zelensky's "favor" for Trump was justified. That favor— which Democrats are trying to prove was a quid pro quo for much-needed military aid— was dependant upon the Ukrainians investigating Biden for using his position as Vice President to get his son Hunter a seat on the board of a corrupt Ukrainian energy company, Burisma.

I'm curious to see whether or not other Democratic candidates will try to throw shade on Biden, or if they'll use this opportunity to seize on President Trump's own corruption. Regardless, I'm sure the impeachment hearings will be a major part of tonight's debate.

Episode 7, The Impeach Pit-Fighters
Atlanta, Georgia — MSNBC — 11/20

Recently, I started reading Joe Trippi's The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. In an early chapter, the veteran political campaigner recounts his experience managing the trail of Democratic candidate, Howard Dean.

As a young voter, I was mostly blind to the cut-throat political tactics at play in every major election. Even the smallest mistakes are exposed and used against a candidate to make them appear small, ridiculous, and inexperienced. Howard Dean's downfall was the inopportune Dean Scream.

As Trippi points out in his book, Howard Dean received an inordinate amount of criticism over this mistimed shriek. While such an act might have been over-looked with a lesser-known candidate, Dean was on the rise.

Similarly, I think Buttigieg has been an exceptionally presidential candidate. He's well-spoken and his policy isn't far from moderate. He's young and passionate, and the other candidates are beginning to notice him. I don't think the wine cave "scandal" will give them enough ammunition to put him to rest; but I think we'll continue to see him come under fire.

Episode 8, Smoke-Filled Crystal Wine Cave
Los Angeles, California — PBS — 12/19