The first Democratic presidential debate on Wednesday will give contenders struggling to break through in the crowded field an opportunity to step out of the shadow cast by front-runners Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, who take the stage a day later.
The appetite among Democratic voters for a politically experienced candidate could benefit the current leader, former Vice President Joe Biden, who also served for 36 years as a US senator from Delaware. According to interviews with the Times, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, loves vegan cupcakes; New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio loves pulled pork; Sen. Eric Swalwell of California, self-help guru Marianne Williamson, and Washington Gov.
The liberal firebrand from MA has steadily risen in polls over the last two months and is drawing crowds on the campaign trail by using an expansive portfolio of proposals on a series of issues to brand herself as a candidate with a plan.
Here are some key moments to watch for during the matchups.
Each candidate will have 60 seconds to answer questions and will be given 30 seconds for follow-ups. The other 10 candidates (split because there are just too many for one stage) will face questions on Thursday night at the same venue.
The debates will run from 9PM to 11PM EST both nights.More news: Beth Chapman of 'Dog the Bounty Hunter' in medically-induced coma
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While the candidates stumped before their party's faithful, hopes of winning SC in a general election remain thin.
They represent two different factions of the Democratic Party.
That could lead to some fireworks.
Four candidates - Montana Governor Steve Bullock, Representative Seth Moulton, Miramar, Florida, Mayor Wayne Messam and former US Senator Mike Gravel - failed to meet the minimum requirements to get on stage.
The candidates in SC offered remarks at a fish fry hosted by US House Majority Whip James Clyburn on Friday night, battling bugs and the sticky summer heat to shake hands with voters.
But the questions often unanticipated are those created to show the candidates' more human side. "So it's very hard to break through".
O'Rourke's travails come perhaps as the biggest surprise. In its announcement of the plan, his campaign addressed this issue by noting that "73 percent of the benefits of cancelling all student debt go to the bottom 80 percent of Americans who are making less than $127,000 a year", while "nothing" goes to "the top one-tenth of one percent". Pramila Jayapal, Ilhan Omar, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
"So if I were competing in the progressive lane, I would point out that if you like Bernie's agenda, don't pick him to get it done because he has no record of getting anything done", Tyler said. The Massachusetts senator's constant stream of policy proposals has helped her campaign gain ground, and she's the sole top-tier candidate who will appear at the Wednesday debate.