” CNN Democratic Primary Debate – Quasi-Statistical Selection, Quasi-Stellar Performance ” – July 30, 2019.
Pre-debate exercise by the CNN team comprising the twin firsts of : (a) a statistical random selection process for the podium position of candidates on the two nights ; and (b) pattern of questions avoiding ‘one word’ or ‘raise your hands’ responses from the candidates made the Debate interesting besides revealing quite a bit about the well performing candidates in this group.
Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont) ; Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA) ; Gov Steve Bullock ; Author Marianne Williamson ; Rep John Delaney (Maryland) ; Rep Tim Ryan (Ohio) ; Gov John Hickenlooper (Colorado) ; Senator Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota) ; Former Rep Beto O’Rourke (Texas) ; Mayor Pete Buttigieg (South Bend, Indiana) were the 10 candidates on stage tonight.
CNN’s Dana Bash, Don Lemon, and Jake Tapper moderated the event.
Healthcare, Immigration, Gun Violence, Beating Trump, Climate Change, Racism, Economy, and Foreign Policy were the topics covered in this debate.
Here it is from my perspective the Chief point(s) on the (a) performance of the candidates, and (b) issues discussed and supported :
1. Issues discussed and supported : Healthcare : Alternative to Medicare for All with some changes enabling Americans to make a personal choice about healthcare and options wins in this debate going by the numbers suggesting the view on stage tonight. Immigration : Decriminalization of those crossing the border didn’t get majority support in the Debate. Gun Violence : Taking the NRA head-on had the support of a majority in this group on this issue. Beating Trump : Real solutions and not promises ; courage and resolve to fight ; Campaign of energy, endurance, and a vision ; get this election record the highest voter turnout – were the ideas mooted to beat Trump in this election by the group in this debate. Climate Change : Generally accepted as an existential crisis by all; GND finding already two opponents in John Delaney and John Hickenlooper ; Formulation of a Green Industrial Policy with $ 2 Trillion for innovation research and to gain 1.2 million new jobs in Green Manufacturing by Elizabeth Warren – Bring everyone in this solution, and bring every suggestion into effect is the ultimate consensus on this issue. Racism in America : Not just tolerance and respect but embracing everyone ; Core values, an agenda that represents everyone ; Calling out white supremacists for who they are and what it is (domestic terrorism) ; Community participation and community voicing ; economic opportunity for all ; from hurting to healing – are some ideas that emerged. Economy : Making manufacturing stronger ; engaging allies in trade policy without isolating oneself ; new comprehensive trade plans, negotiations with unions, small businesses, human rights personnel at the table – are some suggestions mooted. Foreign Policy : International diplomatic approach and coming to terms with differences to achieve peace is the general consensus.
2. Performance of the Candidates : Bernie Sanders : Spoke effectively and confidently to the voters through this opportunity on all issues. Expected to do better with change in style and substance of answers in the ensuing debates.
Elizabeth Warren : Her approach to state a sort of a thesis before arguing is really a winning approach. She should be extremely satisfied.
Pete Buttigieg : Argued with facts and made his position clear even while disagreeing early. He scored very well.
Amy Klobuchar and Tim Ryan : Spoke slowly and clearly on every issue holding composure while being precise on their respective positions.
Beto O’Rourke, John Delaney, John Hickenlooper, and Steve Bullock : Leaned heavily on their experiences and their initiatives during their helm and in personal lives be it on Healthcare, Climate Change, Economy, Education, Immigration …
Marianne Williamson : Spoke astutely with an excellent understanding of the topics. Her single critical point is that, “rather than discussing and being worried about systems, we should be worried about the causes” will be revealing to the Democratic Party. On gun violence she pleaded for ‘constitutional amendment, proper legislation, and public funding for federal fin’ as what Democratic Party should do. For Reparations she advocated ‘truth telling’ and a 200 to 500 billion dollar amount. She is the real winner in this debate.
The most powerful phrase came from John Delaney : He recounted what John F Kennedy said ” We should not seek the Republican answers; we should not seek the Democrat’s answers; we should seek the right answers” to all our challenges and problems. ‘Restore vision, unity, leadership, and decency’ is his call at this moment. ‘Real solutions and not just promises’ constitutes his byword. He made his presence felt definitely in this group tonight.
Conclusion : With nobody taking the spotlight, with nobody making great statements of value , with nobody intervening aggressively or aiming to distract the opponents from one another’s stance – the Debate overall may not have excited many, but must have definitely and pleasantly awakened the viewers and listeners.
“Dieu avec nous”
Wednesday, July 31, 2019 – 9.49 a.m. (IST)
Tidbit : ” Democrats want to be the Party of Big Structural Change. Come 2021, you’ll see Real Change ” – Elizabeth Warren.