Magic Talk Explains: The Fourth US Democratic Debate

Latest - Magic Talk 09/10/2019

12 Democrats will take to the stage October 15 8pm Eastern Time (1pm October 16 in New Zealand) to describe their vision for the future of America.

The first three debates for the American Democratic Party featured 20 people over two nights each. The limited time that results for each candidate means many don't know who stands for what so Magic Talk can explain.

Bernie Sanders

Trailblazer, Bernie Sanders has set the legislative agenda with his stalwart policies framing much of the democratic platform.  $15 minimum wage, the Green New Deal, Medicare for All have been staples of the democratic platform since he introduced them during his 2016 contest for the nomination against Hillary Clinton.

Joe Biden

Moderate Joe Biden, Obama VP and staunch Democratic traditionalist makes a call for a return to politics from a pre-Trump era, a sort of soft reboot back to the status quo. Powered by name recognition his campaign claims to make small considered steps in expanding the successes of the Obama administration like expanding the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, to include more Americans.

Elizabeth Warren

Fencing the middle ground between the two is Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, vowing to take on corruption in Washington in order to restore democratic capitalism in order to make it work for the middle class and not the mega rich.

Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris, is the next highest polling Democrat her career taking her from being Californian District Attorney, to State Attorney General and currently serves as a Senator for the state. Harris made strong ground in the early debates, calling out frontrunner Biden for his comments about segregationist senators from the 70s, drawing upon her experience as black American woman.

Harris’ experience as a criminal lawyer makes for her greatest strength and most damning weakness. Her campaign touts criminal justice reform, while her record as a progressive prosecutor is undermined by her stint as state attorney general.

Democratic Debate (L-R) Sanders, Biden, Warren Source: Getty

Pete Buttigieg

South Bend Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, prior to his re-election as mayor in 2015 Buttigieg publicly came out as gay making early headlines being from the same state as Vice President Mike Pence, who has campaigned strongly against gay rights. His platform includes universal background checks for firearms, reducing income inequality, and abolishing the electoral college. Mayor Buttigieg has struggled with the black community in his hometown which comes back to haunt him in his campaign.

Cory Booker

Former Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s signature policy proposal is lovingly called baby bonds to provide children who come of age a nest egg to begin investing, in college or business or to hold on to the family farm.

Andrew Yang

Another attempt to  inject wealth into the hands of the lower earners is to do just that, the internet's favourite candidate Tech entrepreneur Andrew Yang is pushing his ‘freedom dividend’ a Universal Basic Income, that gives $1,000 dollars a month directly to American citizens unconditionally in order to stimulate the economy and break inequality. He also sets himself apart with a data privacy policy platform that would protect citizens data as private property, and a steadfast supporter base ‘the yang gang’ that will be hard fought to shift their vote to any other candidate even if he drops out.

Beto O'Rourke

Texas Democrat hopeful Beto O’Rourke first exploded into national awareness by running a competitive campaign for Senate against republican incumbent Ted Cruz. A long held republican stronghold O’Rourke’s campaign showed he may appeal to traditional republicans to take back the white house. He has thus far struggled to produce any unique policies, although he has been vociferous in his criticism of the President.

September Democratic Debate in Houston, Texas Source: Getty

Julián Castro

Former Obama Cabinet Minister, Julián Castro was Secretary of Housing and Urban Development for three years starting in 2014. The only latino candidate in the field, was tipped early on as a potential Vice President for Hillary Clinton during her presidential bid, his champion policy proposals include investing in early education and sweeping immigration reforms.

Amy Klobuchar

Minnesota Moderate Amy Klobuchar is understated and modest which can seem like an attractive respite from the bluster of the Trump Presidency and keeps her in good company with conservative pundits and lawmakers alike. As Biden continues to decline in the face of ongoing gaffes and errors she is set to absorb some of his dropping voters, though she struggles to climb in national polls.

Tulsi Gabbard

Hawaiin military combat veteran and first Samoan American member of Congress. Gabbard joined the military in response to the September 11 attacks. While her domestic policies mirror many of her fellow Democrats where she distinguishes herself is on an emphasis on foreign policy.

Tom Steyer

Latecomer billionaire Tom Steyer announced his bid in the crowded democratic field in July, this will be his first debate having not qualified before. Steyer has been a longtime mega donor for the democratic party, his needtoimpeach campaign since 2017 has amassed 8 million American emails from voters giving him an opportunity to convert those to support.