Once 2019 turns into 2020, the Democratic primary campaign will kick into a new level of intensity as voting in the first inches closer and closer. With that in mind, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) has announced the dates for one debate in January, and three debates in February, all of which to coincide with the early voting caucus and primary states.
The location for the event will span all four early primary states including Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina. Each state will host a primary debate just days before voting.
CNN gets the first nod on Jan. 14, 2020, hosting a debate from Des Moines, Iowa:
CNN will host the Iowa Democratic presidential debate on January 14, in what will be the final face-to-face meeting between the candidates before the nation begins heading to the polls.
CNN, in partnership with the Des Moines Register, will air the debate live in primetime from the campus of Drake University.
The Democratic National Committee made the announcement on Thursday as part of a larger look at the upcoming debate calendar for the remaining early voting states of New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina.
The DNC said it would outline the criteria to qualify for the debates at a later date.
Participation criteria for each debate have not yet been released, nor do we know anything about moderators or broadcast times. The one caveat, about the January debate, is that it could be in the middle of the Senate impeachment trial which could take some of the candidates off the campaign trail. The January debate date and time are subject to change based on that variable.
January/February 2020 Debate Schedule
Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020 – CNN/Des Moines Register Democratic Debate
Watch On: CNN
Location: Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa
Voting: Iowa Caucus, Feb. 3
Friday, Feb. 7, 2020 – ABC/WMU Democratic Debate
Watch On: ABC
Location: St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire
Voting: New Hampshire Primary, Feb. 11
Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2020 – MSNBC/NBC News Democratic Debate
Watch On: MSNBC and NBC
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada (specific venue not named)
Voting: Nevada Caucus, Feb. 22
Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020 – CBS News Democratic Debate
Watch On: CBS
Location: The Gaillard Center in Charleston, South Carolina
Voting: South Carolina Primary, Feb. 29
With so many events crammed into February, it could be the most pivotal month in the entire campaign. The four early states vote in between four nationally broadcast debates. In some ways, it seems like overkill to hold so many debates just days apart. What new information can be learned about the candidates in such a short amount of time? It will be the most stressful and intense month of the campaign.
With Super Tuesday set for March 3, 2020, it’s possible there could be another debate sandwiched in after the South Carolina primary on Feb. 29, but the DNC has not released any events beyond February.
Visit the Democratic debate schedule page for full details and up to date information.