7th Democratic Debate Predictions | QT Politics

7th Democratic Debate Predictions | QT Politics


The 7th Democratic Debate will take place
on January 14th, 2020, and feature just six candidates: Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Pete
Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar and Tom Steyer. This debate will be the first of 2020, and
last before the critical Iowa Caucus, which will be held on February 3rd, and assign the
first 41 pledged delegates for the primary contest. The January debate will be held at Drake University
in Des Moines, Iowa, and hosted by CNN and The Des Moines Register. The moderators will be Wolf Blizter, Abby
Phillip, and Brianne Pfannenstiel. Three more debates will follow throughout
February, in advance of the next three primaries and caucuses, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South
Carolina. Each of these debates will be held in their
corresponding early voting states: one at St. Anselm College, in Manchester, New Hampshire
hosted by ABC News, and WMUR-TV in parntership with Apple News; the next in Las Vegas, Nevada,
hosted by MSNBC and the Nevada Independent; and the final February debate will be held
in Charleston, South Carolina, hosted by CBS News and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute
in partnership with Twitter. In this video, I’m going to do my best to
fill you in on what you need to know, going into the Iowa debate: news stories that will
affect topics of conversation, what’s going on in the primary generally, and what you’re
likely to hear from each of the candidates. In a sense, this should serve, for the debate,
as an answer to this question: What’s the context? – First things first, there is technically a
chance that the January debate will have to be rescheduled, as the impeachment trial against
Donald Trump is set to begin in the Senate next week. Because Three of the six debate participants,
Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Amy Klobuchar, are sitting Senators, they are
required to serve essentially as jurors for the Trump trial. If the trial is set to begin Tuesday night,
the DNC will move the event, but more likely, the trial will begin sometime soon after the
debate. But even if the trial won’t postpone the debate,
it is still likely to affect the questions posed by moderators. With Trump’s impeachment moving into the next
phase, it’s highly likely that impeachment will be talked about. This is, in my view, unfortunate, since every
candidate on stage supports impeachment. The only democratic presidential candidate
who has not either voted for impeachment, or said that they would have, was Tulsi Gabbard,
who was not for impeachment, before she decided she was for it, before she voted ‘present’
in the actual vote. Gabbard has stated that her vote was in protest
of the impeachment process, not a rejection of the general idea that Trump ought to
be impeached. Gabbard’s position on impeachment, of course,
will not likely make the debate stage, as she herself has failed to qualify once again. In order to qualify for the Iowa Debate, candidates
had to secure 225,000 unique donors, and earn at least 5% in four DNC-approved national
polls, or 7% in two early state polls, released between November 16th and January 10th. Both Andrew Yang and Cory Booker met the donor
threshold, but failed to qualify based on polling. Yang earned one qualifying poll, while Booker
had zero. With neither Yang nor Booker making the debate
stage, this will be the whitest debate yet. Gabbard, too, might’ve added some some color,
since she is of mixed—white, polynesisan and asian—descent, she failed to qualify
by either threshold. Julian Castro, of course, will also not be
making the event, as he has recently dropped out of the race, and probably would not have
made the debate, anyhow. The whiteness of the debate will likely become
a debate question, as it did last time, while Yang was still in. That said, some minority groups will have
representation: Sanders is of Jewish heritage, Buttigieg is gay, and Steyer is a billionaire. No comment on Warren. Another subject that is likely to get attention
in this debate is foreign policy, due to the recent dust up with Iran. As I’m sure you’re well aware, US-Iranian
relations are extremely volatile at the moment, with US forces on high alert, in anticipation
of possible Iranian drone strikes. Iran recently launched more than a dozen missiles
at two Iraqi bases that host US troops. The move was a reaction to the recent US drone
strike that assassinated top Iranian general, Qassem Soleimani. Trump and US officials have claimed that the
strike was carried out to prevent an imminent attack in the region that would have put American
lives at risk, but have declined to provide evidence to support the claim. Adding insult to injury, from the Iranian
perspective, Trump repeatedly called the Iranian military leader the T word—a word Tehran
is now branding the US military with. The mounting tensions are likely a matter
that will gain attention in this debate. Foreign policy is probably typically under-emphasized
in debates, as the subject is, in my view, surprisingly low priority for American voters. A Gallup survey of top priorities ranked foreign
affairs in 7th place, behind taxes, weapons, and gender equality. Foreign affairs didn’t make the top 6 in a
more recent Gallup study. And in a more detailed analysis of top issues
by Gallup, the top foreign policy related topic was International issues, ranking as
the top issue for just 2% of American voters. While there really are plenty of other issues
worthy of discussion, it seems to me that the citizens of the global hegemon would want
to pay a little more attention to how America is running the rest of the world. One significant piece of news that will no
doubt affect the dynamics at play in the 7th Democratic Debate are the strong polls numbers
coming in for Bernie Sanders. Surging after the last debate, Sanders has
begun polling above 20% nationally for the first time since April 2019. He’s leading in Iowa, with a statistically
insignificant .3 points above Mayor Pete. In New Hampshire, he leads by 2.7 points above
Biden, who is in a statistical tie with Buttigieg for second place. The strong polling for Sanders are especially
good indicators for the candidate’s prospects in the Iowa Caucus, since he has an especially
youthful and enthusiastic base, having earned the largest number of donors in the race. Adding to his recurrently strong fundraising
figures, Sanders raised more than 34.5 million dollars in the fourth quarter of 2019, nearly
10 million more than Mayor Pete’s 24.7 million raised during the same period. Sanders’ fundraising prowess also means only
self-funded billionaires Steyer and Bloomberg have a chance of competing with his spending
power. The real potential for victory for Bernie
Sanders has not been lost on the mainstream media, or Democratic party insiders. The AP recently reported, “Fears of Sanders win growing among Democratic
establishment.” Then, the New York Times featured on its opinion
page, “Of Course Bernie Can Win” And the Wall Street Journal featured an editorial
claiming: “Be Prepared for President Sanders: The
Vermont socialist could soon become the front-runner for the Democratic nomination.” The Independent reported: “Against all odds, it looks like Bernie
Sanders might be the Democratic nominee after all” On January 7th, CNN’s Chris Cillizza even
put out an editorial entitled, “Bernie Sanders could actually win this
thing.” That came just a couple weeks after Cillizza
boldly proclaimed Sanders to be the only loser of the last debate. (Aside from the first hour, and Pete, who
he also called a winner.) So, quite the quick turn around for Cillizza. The fact that Sanders is becoming accepted
as a very likely winner of not just the Iowa Caucus, but the nationwide primary contest
as well, puts a target on his back. Other candidates are likely to go after him. And to be honest, the moderators are likely
to try to take him down as well. Last debate, there was a particularly harsh
interaction with a moderator—I don’t expect him to be given fairer treatment by CNN. Sanders actually does quite well when he’s
got his back against the wall. While he generally avoids launching attacks
on other candidates, when he is criticized, his defences and counter-attacks tend to be
quite effective. In terms of the other candidates, the most
likely to go on the offensive against Sanders are those in ideological opposition, who have
demonstrated a propensity to debate aggressively. Klobuchar has seen slight improvements in
her polling, and better reception in debate analyses since she began getting more aggressive,
so she’s more than likely to take a swing at him. Joe Biden may generally want to avoid conflict
with smaller candidates, but sparring with Sanders is probably seen as a necessity at
this point. Buttigieg, who like Klobuchar, has become
increasingly feisty in these events, will no doubt launch an attack on Sanders, as well. He’s neck-and-neck with Sanders in Iowa, and
winning there is really Pete’s best—if not only—path to securing the nomination. Elizabeth Warren is unlikely to attack Sanders
as the two are ideological allies who have thus far avoided criticizing each other on
stage—and likely made a non-aggression pact prior to launching their campaigns. Steyer is also unlikely to attack Sanders,
as he has taken up a passive approach to the debates—and let’s be honest, such a conflict
would probably end poorly for the billionaire. While Steyer has managed to make the debate
stage, and Andrew Yang hasn’t, donor Tom is actually polling behind Yang in the national
polls, and, at least from my perspective, seems to have little to offer in terms of
unique policy suggestions or political experience. The best case he’s made for himself so far,
in my view, is that he knows business—which kind of reminds me of the case the current
president was able to make for himself in 2016. I don’t expect much from Steyer in this debate,
although, it is noteworthy that he did a little better than usual back in December. Amy Klobuchar did incredibly well in the December
debate, and earned a low-key surge into fifth place in New Hampshire over the holidays. Not exactly a headline-worthy win, but it’s
good news for her campaign. I anticipate that Klobuchar will enter the
debate feeling good, and try to recapture the magic of the December debate. This could mean launching another attack on
Pete Buttigieg—or another candidate. At the same time, it’s probably worth noting
at this point that Klobuchar really has virtually no chance of securing the Democratic nomination. Even with strong attacks on Mayor Pete in
the 6th Debate, and a number of other great moments, she’s not performing well nationally. She’s behind Yang in the RCP averages, and
behind three candidates competing along the same ideological path—the three Bs—Biden,
Bloomberg and Buttigieg. Pete Buttigieg is certainly one of the most
important candidates to watch in this debate. He has seen steady declines in his polling
since November, and in many ways can no longer be seen as a top-tier candidate. He is, however, certainly a top-candidate
for Iowa, polling neck-and-neck with Bernie Sanders in that state. Should Pete win in Iowa, it could lead to
surging throughout the rest of the country, which might win him the nomination. Should he lose significantly in Iowa, his
chances of winning are drastically reduced in a single moment. The South Bend mayor is continuing to face
attacks form both the left and the right. Conservatives have been criticizing Pete over
his recent tweet: “Innocent civilians are now d34d because
they were caught in the middle of an unnecessary and unwanted military tit for tat,” His tweet allowed for the US to share some
of the blame after an Iranian missile accidentally shot down a Ukrainian airliner. If you can think more than two steps back,
I think Pete’s absolutely correct, by the way. The Mayor has also been facing increasing
heat from Black Lives Matter, who recently picketed his recent visit to a homeless shelter
in California. The mayor, recurrently unpopular with black
voters, neglected to return home after a homeless South Bend resident, Anthony Young passed
away from hypothermia over the holidays. The shooting of Eric Logan by South bend police
is also still an issue dogging Pete’s campaign. One or more of these issues could be a weak
point for other candidates to strike at in the January debate. While not flourishing quite as much as a few
months ago in the polls, Elizabeth Warren has been making a bunch of strange waves as
of late. She recently alleged that Trump’s Iran attack
was potentially a political calculation to distract from impeachment. She got the endorsement of recent primary
drop out Julian Castro, who I think correctly pointed out, that the Senator was a less divisive
choice than either Biden or Sanders. He was less correct in his non-verbal endorsement
of her dance moves. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=siLQKin3HBk Yeah, don’t encourage her, man. By the way, there’s apparently been a whole
big critical reaction of her dancing, and a counter reaction to that, calling the criticism
of her dancing misogynistic. I really hope that doesn’t get addressed at
this debate. It’s silly. She dances goofy. And guess what? It doesn’t matter at all. Warren dances goofy, and is awkward on facebook
live. Sanders has the worst posture in the world,
and once made the mistake of recording himself talk-singing… Biden constantly looks either shocked or confused. Buttigieg has an annoying fake folksy way
of talking. Meanwhile, the President of the United States
speaks in sentence fragments, tweets like he failed 8th grade English, and this is what
his face looks like. Presidents don’t have to be, have to be cool. Speaking of Joe Biden, while his fundraising
and polling in Iowa and New Hampshire remain relatively weak, he still has a strong lead
in the national polls, and in two other early states: Nevada and South Carolina. He is also remains the overwhelming favourite
among black voters: more than double than the black support of Sanders, his next closest
competitor according to a new Washington Post / IPSO poll. He also recently got the endorsement of Eric
Garcetti—the LA Mayor who previously considered presidential run himself. One issue which Biden may face in this debate
is his 2003 Iraq vote, which has come under renewed criticism by the Sanders campaign. Sanders’ speechwriter, David Sirota, and senior
campaign adviser, Jeff Weaver, have both recently come out accusing Biden of trying to rewrite
history—claiming to have opposed Bush’s invasion, despite voting for the action at
the time. In the face of heightened tension with Iran,
this issue may have renewed pertinence. Biden, like Sanders, has repeatedly criticized
the Trump administration’s decision to assassinate Soleimani. At the same time, his checkered past may look
unappealing for pro-peace Democrats, compared Bernie’s more consistent opposition to US
military aggression. At the end of the day, despite Biden’s strong
polling nation-wide, this debate will more than likely be perceived by candidates as
the debate for Iowa. If that holds true, Buttigeg, not Biden, would
seen as the front-runner amongst the moderate candidates, as he is the closest competitor
for Sanders in that state. In this way, while Biden happens to be doing
better overall, the top moderate actually changes, depending on your answer to this
question: What’s the context?

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

100 Comments

  1. Yang was unfairly excluded due to lack of polling. The DNC arbitrarily set the standards in such a way that specifically excluded Yang and Steyer. In the few polls that trickled in, Steyer barely made it. Yang requested more polls, asking the DNC to commission them, but they refused. He then commissioned polls with pollsters the DNC has used in the past, both of which would have qualified him, but the DNC refused to acknowledge them. 2020 feels like diet 2016.

  2. They’re all just gonna say how trump shouldn’t have killed Iran guy just so their base likes them more. If any of them said it was good they would get attacked by the media and other candidates..

  3. The only reason polls show Biden has the majority of African American votes is because they're polling black people ages 35+ and are to be likely voters. They also equate Biden with Obama so it may be largely default support. Bernie's campaign reaches out to younger people and unlikely voters. Polls underestimate his support.

  4. Great to see another video — your explanations are always so concise, and i always look forwards to your analysis!

  5. It's good to see that the billionaire minority still have a representative. Those poor people have really had a rough time.

  6. Just as usual, creating a shortcut to the part of the video where Gabbard namedropping stops, ocassional back and forth with Cilizza ends and the actual content begins would be really useful.

  7. Warren is getting desperate so she might actually attack Bernie. She already has on the campaign trail with a debunked planted story. #SandersTurner2020

  8. Just look at these comments. So many people upset that Yang will not be present for the debate. No one can tell me that Yang doesn’t have the support or the expertise to be on that stage. He deserves to be there, and I truly believe he may be in the top 3! Fuck this system.

  9. Hopefully Andrew Yang makes it next month but if he drops out then I'm switching back to trump not supporting any of the dems expect Andrew

  10. They need to stop polling old decrepit people. That's why Yang isn't up there. Have you seen these Town Halls? Looks like a Geritol convention

  11. sorry but even though I don’t like her I 100% agree with tulsi’s justification for voting present. it was BEYOND partisan

  12. The fact we have presidential debates in Iowa, and vote on Tuesday (Instead of weekends), says everything about how little any change will happen until we cap the age of politicians at 55. Also just because Buttieg is young , he seems to have the attitude of an 80 year old, he's out too.

  13. The fact that the race of the candidates is an issue at all is the kind of attitude that will cause the Democrats to lose in the general, just like last time…

  14. Just a small comment, Qassem Sulimani is in fact a head of a terrorist organisation inside the IRGC. Look it up: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quds_Force

  15. The debates are gonna be boring and stale without Yang and I think the audience and people at home will notice that. Yang is very interactive on the debate stage, not just bickering with the other democrats. When it comes to explaining stuff he makes it so the average person understands what he's saying and he keeps the audience engaged with things like "how many of you here *insert topic*?" Hes speaking directly to the audience. While other candidates are talking about insurance premiums, rebates, taxes, etc or whatever, Yang talks about real stuff that the average Joe can understand and relate to. Without Yang there to breathe life into the debates itll be a snooze fest that smells like old white people

  16. "[Sanders] once made the mistake of recording himself talk-singing"

    WRONG. I wouldn't want to live in a world where that hadn't happened.

  17. Why has’nt Michael Bloomberg made it into ANY debates, even though he is polling way over Klobuchar, Steyer and Yang?

  18. all the candidates i liked have dropped out, so i'm voting for Biden. Not in the mood for a long primary so let's just close this down fast and take down trump.

  19. How is Steyer and Amy up there and not Yang? I wish Tulsi was there so she can destroy Warren. Bernie needs to destroy Biden

  20. In my opinion, Biden promised Klobachar VP or a top administration position. She seems to me like his attack dog. She goes after everyone, but Biden. That’s why she is still running with zero chance of winning… It’ll be interesting to see if my theory holds up tonight. Thoughts?

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