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Monday, Aug 19, 2019

Senators Warren, Castro shine in opening Democratic debate

In all 10 candidates took the stage in Miami on Wednesday night for the first of the two presidential debates, in a format that experts have said was designed for the candidate to introduce themselves to the party’s primaries voters. The second bunch of 10, with frontrunner Joe Biden in the middle, will go on stage on Thursday night.

world Updated: Jun 28, 2019 00:05 IST
Yashwant Raj
Yashwant Raj
Hindustan Times, Washington
According to many experts, the night belonged to US Senator Elizabeth Warren and former housing secretary Julian Castro.
According to many experts, the night belonged to US Senator Elizabeth Warren and former housing secretary Julian Castro.(AFP PHOTO.)
         

As the frontrunner on the stage, Senator Elizabeth Warren dominated the first Democratic presidential debate on Wednesday but others who have struggled to get noticed such as former housing secretary Julian Castro and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio also took the opportunity to try and break through and make a mark.

Castro, a little known politician from Texas, scored a 2,400% spike in Google searches at one stage in the debate, as he aggressively advocated his immigration reforms plan, engaging rival candidates on the stage in fierce exchanges, especially fellow Texan Beto O’Rourke. Cory Booker, an African American senator from New Jersey topped the searches eventually, followed by Tulsi Gabbard, a Hindu-American lawmaker, and O’Rourke.

According to many experts, the night belonged to Warren and Castro. “Warren tonight has completely set the tone on the economic discussion, with others reacting to her. Castro tonight has completely set the tone on the immigration discussion, with others reacting to him,” Mo Elleithee, spokesperson for Hillary Clinton, wrote on Twitter. Booker and Senator Amy Klobuchar were also impressive, according to others.

In all 10 candidates took the stage in Miami on Wednesday night for the first of the two presidential debates, in a format that experts have said was designed for the candidate to introduce themselves to the party’s primaries voters. The second bunch of 10, with frontrunner Joe Biden in the middle, will go on stage on Thursday night.

The Wednesday night debate covered a lot of ground from immigration reforms, to the economy, guns rights, abortion, climate change, student loans, healthcare and foreign policy specially Iran. And not all of the 10 were on the same page for a large number of those issues, showing up ongoing debates and differences between the different strains in the Democratic Party, with progressives pushing a more aggressive agenda.

President Donald Trump, who was on his way to the G-20 summit, was keeping an eye on the debate, as he had said he will be. “BORING,” he responded at one stage, during a discussion on immigration and the death of a father and daughter while trying to swim across a river from Mexico. His two elder sons, Don Trump Jr and Eric Trump, kept up their Twitter interventions as well.

First Published: Jun 28, 2019 00:05 IST

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