Democratic debate in Milwaukee spotlights fundamental divide


Washington Post:

Democratic debate in Milwaukee spotlights fundamental divide

MILWAUKEE — Fresh off her double-digit loss in New Hampshire, Hillary Clinton sought to undermine surging rival Bernie Sanders here Thursday night, arguing that his expansive agenda for government action on health care, college costs and infrastructure investments is both impractical and far more costly than he has said. The debate turned fiery only in the closing minutes, when the two clashed over foreign policy and over comments by Sanders critical of President Obama.
“I couldn’t disagree more,” Clinton said, accusing Sanders of leveling the kind of attacks on the president usually heard from Republicans.

“That is a low blow,” Sanders said, saying he had worked with the president throughout the past seven years. “Have you ever disagreed with the president?” he asked.
Overall, the debate highlighted anew the fundamental fault line between the two candidates for the Democratic nomination, with Sanders standing his ground on behalf of a big and bold agenda that has energized progressives across the country and Clinton expressing her support for many of her rival’s goals but arguing that she has the preparation to make real progress in a divided country.

At Thursday night’s Democratic debate in Milwaukee, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton once again faced questions about gender. (PBS NewsHour)

After a pair of heated contests in Iowa and New Hampshire, the two Democrats spent much of their two-hour debate in relatively civil disagreement. They disagreed over the size and scope of government and traded views on topics including race and criminal justice, immigration and Social Security.

In her closing statement, and without Sanders having an opportunity to reply, Clinton opened up a new argument against her rival, implying that Sanders’s focus on the corrupting influence of political money on government is too limited. “I’m not a single-issue candidate, and I don’t believe we live in a single-issue country,” Clinton said.

The debate had its moments. One thing I find interesting is that Sanders has gotten a lot of support from young people who seem to consider HRC as old school even though he is much older. One problem, they generally turn out in lower numbers for the general election.


Yes whether the young supporters of Sen Sanders will turn out for Sec Clinton is a question. Sen Sanders spoke about it on Tues in his NH victory speech.

He said, “I hope that in the days ahead we can continue to wage a strong issue-oriented campaign and bring new people into the political process. But I also hope that we all remember, and this is a message not just to our opponents, but to those who support me as well, that we will need to come together in a few months and unite this party and this nation because the right-wing Republicans we oppose must not be allowed to gain the presidency.”

“As we all remember, the last time Republicans occupied the White House their trickle-down economic policies drove us into the worst economic downturn since the depression of the 1930s.”

No, we will not allow huge tax breaks for billionaires. We will not allow huge cuts to Social Security, veterans needs, Medicare, Medicaid and education. No, we will not allow back into the White House a political party which is so beholden to the fossil fuel industry that they cannot even acknowledge the scientific reality of climate change or anything about it."

And Sec Clinton for her part recently said if she is fortunate enough to clinch the nomination, the first call she will make is to Sen Sanders to see where we go from here.


I thought it was funny when he reminded her that she wasn’t in the White House yet!!

Who picks out Hillary’s outfits she wears to the debates? Last nights was awful.

Hillary was shrill last night and Bernie was angry. Hillary is so sure of herself.

She had some nerve talking about the Koch brothers when the democrats are practically owned by George Soros. Talk about hypocrisy.


There is no fundamental divide between Clinton and Sanders, only their words and what they each have achieved through greed. The “fundamental divide” is that a taxpayer supported PBS is allowed to exist at this stage of our technologies, spewing left-wing propaganda. I wonder what Hillary has promised PBS, especially CGI donor Judy Woodruff :wink: ?


Apparently there weren’t questions about the FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton and I think I saw somebody on Twitter say, inferring what Marco Rubio said in the previous debate about Democrats being asked about abortion, no questions about abortion.

Republicans in multiple debates have been asked abortion questions, about defunding Plannned Parenthood. Why do Republicans get these questions but Hillary Clinton is not asked for example about her comments about there being restrictions at the end of the third trimester, but that is even beyond when Roe v Wade said there was viability! When will the Democrats be asked in a debate where they stand?


over comments by Sanders critical of President Obama.
“I couldn’t disagree more,” Clinton said, accusing Sanders of leveling the kind of attacks on the president usually heard from Republicans.

“That is a low blow,” Sanders said, saying he had worked with the president throughout the past seven years

They’re both running against the President, I just think it’s funny they can’t say it.

Coal miners and their families who helped turn on the lights and power our factories for generations are now wondering, has our country forgotten us?”

Gosh, I wonder why they’re out of work? It must’ve been those evil Republicans who shut down the mines. (or it could’ve been the guy who said he’d bankrupt the coal power industry, I dunno)

"There is,” Sanders said, “massive despair all over this country.”

Man, after 7 years of a D President and a good chunk of that where they controlled Congress? Sanders also usually says unemployment is really about 10%. Well, if there’s massive despair, horrible health care (after years of Obamacare), horrible unemployment, poverty everywhere, coal miners being shoved aside, massive income inequality (way higher than back under Bush) and all that why just sign me right up for another term of Democratic party rule.


What has Sanders achieved through greed? I’m not saying the man is perfect but greedy is not a word that comes to mind when I think of him.


Way to kick Henry Kissinger when he’s 92 years old, Bernie! A burning issue that needed to be addressed :rolleyes:


Yes, Henry Kissinger was a big issue while abortion was a non-issue! Unemployed coal miners was an issue, but not the fact that it was Pres. Obama and EPA who were determined to put them out of work.


I see Breitbart is running such an article showing this. Maybe other news agencies are too.

Articles in the press seem to be flattering of the debate and saying the 3.3 figure, however it is, was a good figure.


They are both bad. That’s why Citizens United was so damaging.**


My takeaways from the debate:

  1. The Democratic debates are much more substantive than the Republican debates. It’s genuinely shocking how huge the disparity is.

  2. Sanders is not just passionate about wealth inequality; it is virtually all he cares about. His opening statement, his closing statement, and any answer to any question that could possibly be answered thus were dedicated to wealth inequality. Even when he is asked to speak about racism or sexism, he talks about wealth inequality. He does not seem open to embracing an intersectional analysis at all. Racism? Solve it with education and jobs! Sexism? Solve it with jobs and education!

The thing is, he was standing next to one of the most privileged women in the world, who is also subjected to arguably the most relentless misogyny in the world. She doesn’t need a job or a free college education. She needs her whole humanity respected, and breaking up the banks won’t make that happen.

  1. The narrative going into this debate was that Sanders would be confident and Clinton would look desperate. It was exactly the opposite.

Frankly, I started out with a much more favorable opinion of Sanders than I have now. The more I see of him, the less I like. That’s largely because the more I see of him, the more I realize how little there is. He is a one-issue candidate, and he believes that one issue is the root of all ills. I disagree.


I kept looking at the lines around her cheekbones - plastic surgery? were they trying to make her cute?

I am a woman - so I am always looking at what other women are wearing. Once she was dresssed in something resembling a potato sack. Last night I wasn’t sure what color her outfit would be called. Then it practically went up to her chin. I would love to see how she dresses at home when there are no cameras at home.


What were the highlights? I had no time to watch it.


Pretty in depth analysis.


I don’t know how many times they have to ask about the FBI investigation at a Democratic primary debate this far along in the debate process. She has explained over and over her thoughts on it. And Bernie has said in an earlier debate that he doesn’t exactly care about her emails. He was even asked in one of the other debates since, if he still stands by his infamous words of not giving a… about them. And he said he did.

The 3 most important issues to Democratic primary voters in NH were income inequality with 33%, the economy/jobs with 32 percent and health care with 25 percent. Terrorism incidentally was at only 8%.

My top 2 personally are healthcare and the growing income disparity.

Abortion is not the single issue for those of us who vote Democratic that it is for some Republican primary voters. And Democrats already know both of their candidates are pro choice and allow for exceptions for not only for the life of the mother as Rubio does but also allow exceptions for rape and incest as do Bush and Christie when he was still in the race. And are against defunding Planned Parenthood, where many women do go to and trust and are comfortable with as their provider for healthcare services beyond abortion.

But the Republicans have disagreements on abortion which were showcased by the Republicans on stage in their last debate. Even the Catholics didn’t agree.

Rubio requires an exception for the mother to save her life. Bush and Christie said they favored exceptions as well for rape and incest. So naturally you would ask the Republicans more about abortion since it is so important to many Republican primary voters and their candidates don’t agree on even what exceptions should be allowed in the first trimester. So I would expect abortion to be more of a topic in a GOP debate. :shrug:

In the general election debates, perhaps each of the 2 nominees will get a question to distinguish themselves on abortion. But I don’t see why it would be necessary to do so as much in the Democratic primary debates as you seem to think it is.


even though I had the tv on, what they were saying was going in one ear and out the other. in other words, same old same old. pretty boring with only two of them. what else is left to be said?


Hillary complaining how terrible the Koch brothers are - when George Soros donates to her campaign (6 million dollars in December alone) And she was very convincing in her outrage. She said it with a straight face. Just proved how sneaky she is.

Bernie reminding Hillary she wasn’t in the White House yet!


I know you’re a woman but do you spend as much time deciphering on how male candidates look? Is their tie a good match for the rest of their attire? Do they look better in a blue or gray suit? Or should they instead wear a lighter colored jacket to work better with their hair and skin tone? Does their hairstyle suit them? Should they have on black or brown shoes? What about their shirts? Right shirt for the tie and jacket? Did Rubio have too much makeup on last Saturday? My cousin (also female) thought he looked pale and ill. What did you think?


I thought what they said went in 1 of your ears and out the other. Or did you rely on conservative commentators to fill you in as you’ve said you do when President Obama addresses the nation.

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