Five takeaways from the first Democratic debate
CNN and Facebook hosted the first Democratic debate of this primary season Tuesday night. The two-hour long debate held discussions between the five declared candidates: Secretary Hillary Clinton, Senator Bernie Sanders, Governor Martin O’Malley, Senator Lincoln Chafee and Senator Jim Webb. Here’s five things you should know about the debate:
1) Clinton v. Sanders – The key difference between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders is foreign policy. They have somewhat similar positions on domestic policies. As a former Secretary of State, Clinton has more foreign policy experience than Sanders. Tuesday’s debate showed Clinton is also more comfortable discussing foreign policy than Sanders. He consistently dodged questions on foreign policy. He also cited climate change as the biggest threat facing the United States, when other candidates talked about nuclear proliferation and Russia in Syria.
2) Enough with the emails – During a line of questioning about Clinton’s email servers, Sanders effectively shut down the conversation. “The American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails,” he said. Discussion of the topic ceased from that point on. Only time will tell if that move will help or hurt Sanders.
3) Clinton is a woman – She brought this fact up at every available opportunity during Tuesday’s debate. When she was asked how her administration would differ from President Obama’s, she cited her gender as a defining feature. During her opening and closing statements, Clinton mentioned she would be the first female president if elected. Hillary Clinton is a woman and she doesn’t seem to want anyone else to forget that.
4) Agreement on privacy and Snowden – All of the candidates agreed that Edward Snowden should face the law regarding his revealing of the NSA’s data collection program. They also agreed that NSA’s data collection on U.S. citizens is wrong. The candidates also stated that parts of the PATRIOT Act that tend to allow for a warrant-less search of data should not be legal.
5) Look out for Martin O’Malley – O’Malley stepped up to compete against Clinton and Sanders Tuesday night. He took a stand on gun control, sustainable energy and paid family leave. According to PBS Newshour, he ranked third in speaking time with almost 17 minutes. He made a mark where Chafee and Webb did not.