Dem Debate Includes Heated Attacks from the Get-Go: Buttigieg vs. Sanders, Everyone vs. Bloomberg


Six 2020 Democratic presidential candidates clashed in a fiery debate in Las Vegas on Wednesday night.

New York  Mayor Michael Bloomberg was welcomed to his first presidential debate by a series of attacks from his competitors. Bloomberg has risen in the polls to third place with 16.1 percent support in the RealClearPolitics polling average.

“I’d like to talk about who we’re running against: a billionaire who calls women ‘fat broads’ and ‘horse-faced lesbians,'” Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren said.

“No, I’m not talking about Donald Trump,” Warren said. “I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg. Democrats are not going to win if we have a nominee who has a history of hiding his tax returns, of harassing women and supporting racist policies like redlining and stop-and-frisk.”

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Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders also criticized the “stop-and-frisk” policy Bloomberg implemented as mayor, under which people could be stopped and searched by police without warrants. In a 2015 speech, Bloomberg defended the policy and acknowledged that it disproportionately targeted the city’s black and Latino population, according to CBS News.

“In order to beat Donald Trump, we are going to need the largest voter turnout in the history of the United States,” Sanders said. “Mr. Bloomberg had policies in New York City of stop-and-frisk, which went after African-American and Latino people in an outrageous way. That is not a way you’re gonna grow voter turnout.”

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Former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg said the Democratic Party needed to wake up because the current front-runners, Sanders and Bloomberg, were the “two most polarizing figures on this stage.”

“Most Americans don’t see where they fit if they’ve got to choose between a socialist who thinks that capitalism is the root of all evil and a billionaire who thinks money ought to be the root of all power,” he said.

“We shouldn’t have to choose between one candidate who wants to burn this party down and one candidate who wants to buy this party out. We can do better.”

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Buttigieg also clashed with Sanders over health care. Buttigieg has proposed what he calls a “Medicare for All Who Want It” plan, while Sanders is pushing “Medicare for All.”

“We can actually deliver health care without taking it away from anyone,” Buttigieg said. “We can actually empower workers and lift wages without further polarizing this country.”

Buttigieg and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar battled for the more moderate position throughout the debate, Politico reported.

In one such instance, Klobuchar listed bipartisan efforts she worked on to address the immigration crisis, saying the former mayor does not have that experience because he has not “been in the arena.”

“I’m used to senators telling mayors that senators are more important than mayors, but this is the arena too,” Buttigieg said. “You don’t have to be on Capitol Hill for your work to be significant.”

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith