The second set of candidates took the stage in Miami on Thursday for part two of the first Democratic debate. This night featured most of the highest polling candidates including former vice president Joe Biden, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, California Sen. Kamala Harris, and South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg, among others.
Full Night 2 debate video
Here is the complete debate video courtesy of YouTube. This video contains the full 5 hour broadcast from NBC so you’ll have to advance in the video to find the start of the debate.
Note: NBC may have disabled embedding the debate video on websites. You can click here to go directly to the page on YouTube.
Candidates (From left to right on stage): Marianne Williamson, John Hickenlooper, Andrew Yang, Pete Buttigieg, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand, Michael Bennet, Eric Swalwell
Moderators: Savannah Guthrie, Lester Holt, Chuck Todd, Rachel Maddow, and José Diaz-Balart
Original Air Date: Thursday, June 27, 2019
Location: Arsht Center in Miami, Florida
What happened during night 2?
Unlike the first night, which was filled with several candidates barely able to break two percent in polling support, Thursday featured all of the top polling candidates except for Elizabeth Warren, the lone top-tier candidate on Wednesday night.
The first question went to Bernie Sanders, which was surprising since it would’ve been more likely to go to Biden. Moderator Savannah Guthrie asked Bernie whether all his plans would force higher taxes on the middle class. Bernie sidestepped the question and hit all his boilerplate points on the economy being rigged for the wealthy and the lower and middle class getting squeezed by Wall Street and big corporations. Bernie parlayed this into his call for single-payer Medicare-for-all healthcare as a solution to relieve the burden on the middle class. After he was done, Guthrie re-iterated asking whether the middle class would pay more in taxes, which Bernie confirmed that taxes would go up, but healthcare savings would make it worth it.
Biden took the next question on a similar topic but was asked about his statement that the rich shouldn’t be demonized. Biden went on to discuss his economic views about affordable education and improving the economy for the middle class and also said he would eliminate the Trump tax cuts which he says disproportionately benefit the wealthy.
The next few questions focused on the debate of socialism versus capitalism within the Democratic primary. Kamala Harris was asked whether Democrats have a responsibility to explain how they can pay for new social programs. Harris turned the question around and said nobody asked President Trump how he would pay for tax cuts which added to the deficit.
Kirsten Gillibrand made a point that the socialism vs. capitalism debate is confusing since it gets mislabeled, in her opinion, within the discussion. Gillibrand argues that the real issue is helping the middle class, not turning the country to socialism.
The topic of immigration also became heated, especially on the matter of whether individuals in the country without documentation should be deported. There were mixed answers and some candidates didn’t want to outright say they wanted to decriminalize the act of being in the country illegally. Harris and Swalwell said they should not be deported while Biden demurred on the issue falling back to President Obama’s record on immigration saying that laws must be followed in a humane way.
Andrew Yang got a chance to explain his universal basic income plan but stumbled somewhat when pressed on whether a value-added tax, which is part of his plan, would simply eat into the extra $1,000 in payments under Yang’s program. Yang argued that it would be much more helpful to households to give them the money despite the increased in some taxes to pay for it.
The topic of Biden’s age also came up with Eric Swalwell recalling a time when Biden visited California and said the torch should be passed to the next generation of Democrats. Swalwell kept hammering it on every issue, on health care, immigration, the economy, all, he says, should have the torch passed to the next generation.
In response, Biden simply said, “I’m still holding the torch.”
The discussion over racial issues, with the situation in South Bend as the backdrop, became rather heated. Buttigieg took time to explain the matter but was attacked by Swalwell saying that Buttigieg should have fired the police chief and asked why he hadn’t done so yet.
Kamala Harris went at Biden on the same issue, calling him out for his praises for segregationist politicians he once worked with. Biden responded saying it was a total mischaracterization across the board and he never praised segregationists. He then attacked Harris for becoming a prosecutor while he decided to become a public defender.
Harris still went at Biden over the issue of segregated bussing for schoolchildren in the United States. Biden said it was a local issue, not a federal issue, to which Harris responded that the federal government should’ve stepped in.
There were plenty of fireworks and a lot of heated discussions as the candidates hash out their differences on display for Democratic primary voters.
Where can I find the latest Democratic debate information?
As always, bookmark our page dedicated to keeping up with the 2020 Democratic Primary Debate schedule. There you will always find the latest most up-to-date information about all you need to know for the Democratic primary debates.
The next debate comes on July 30 and 31 from Detroit hosted by CNN.