Reaction to Tonight’s Democratic Debate

Tonight’s Democratic presidential debate in New Hampshire was easily the best of the campaign so far. It was truly great.

The debate focused entirely on substance and the differences between the candidates. Both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders probably agree more than they disagree, but this debate highlighted where they diverge. It was very useful to anyone watching.

Both candidates did a great job. It was an evenly-matched fight but Sanders kept Clinton on the defensive for most of the debate. With the exception of foreign policy, it was primarily fought on Sanders terrain. By that measure, he won. But Clinton also did her best to use everything in her opposition research file against Sanders.

Of their weaknesses, Clinton still hasn’t figured out how to answer the charge that she’s in the pocket of Wall Street. Sanders still hasn’t figured out he needs to come up with a coherent foreign policy view. In the end, the debate was probably a draw.

The real winners were Democratic voters. Anyone who watched learned a lot. It made the Republican debates look like over-produced game shows.

One final thought: It was easy to forget the moderators, Chuck Todd and Rachel Maddow, were even there tonight. They asked the questions and let the candidates go at it. It was the model for all political debates.

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  • lanimilbus

    With his hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations to the DSCC, the DCCC, and the DNC, Donald Trump has helped elect more Democrats than Bernie Sanders, who’s given zero.

    • Gumby✓ᴶᵒʰⁿˢᵒⁿ

      Bernie is attracting throngs and has a wave going preaching against the one percent,” said the attendee, requesting anonymity to speak candidly. “So why would he take the weekend to spend in Martha’s Vineyard with wealthy people who are donating at least $37,000 and change to the DSCC?” (That is the minimum contribution to the Senate Democrats campaign arm in order to attend the event).

      http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2015/07/11/sanders-courts-marthas-vineyard-donors/

      • lanimilbus

        And he’s donated zero dollars to the campaign committee dedicated to electing Democrats to the US Senate – you know, the people responsible for confirming a SCOTUS nominee to help overturn Citizens United

    • Lumpenproletariat

      Glad to hear Trump can count on your vote if Sanders is the nominee.

      • lanimilbus

        I said nothing of the sort. Just pointing out that Sanders has done nothing to help Democrats. How is he going to appoint a progressive SCOTUS nominee if he’s unwilling to help ensure a Democratic Senate Majority? How is he going to accomplish any of his legislative agenda if he won’t support Democratic legislators?

        • Hagar32Grady

          I do NOT need your civil War. … .

        • GatorLegal1

          This is one of my chief concerns about Sanders. We need a *veteran Democrat* who can pull support from many *Democrats* across the country, across the entire spectrum of the Democratic party, and across a broad-enough spectrum of all of American politics, if we are going to successfully confront and beat back the recent surge of regressives and tea partiers that have fouled and infested so much of our politics today. Sanders has been running as an independent for most of his political life. He’s only now running as a Democrat. That’s fine, I respect that. But he doesn’t have the long-term relationships built with Democrats all across the country that would and will be necessary to help defeat bad Republicans and bad Republican ideas during his administration. Clinton *does* have that capital already built and banked within the Democratic party. Which is what’s needed now to build upon the achievements attained during Obama’s presidency. Much of what we have gained could be lost during a Sanders administration that does not have the political capital to cobble together a strong enough coalition to confront Republicans on every issue. Not just *some* issues of high importance to the left – but *every* important issue to all moderates, liberals, Democrats, and anybody with a brain who opposes terrible Republican policy.

          (Edited: He’s going to have to work with Democrats in purple and red states to achieve his proposals. Those will be much more successful ventures for Clinton than for Sanders, IMO)

          • eve

            I think we will have Hillary as our nominee. Looking ahead to more of the primaries I don’t think Bernie has a chance.

          • GatorLegal1

            It’s just hard to envision where else he can come out ahead after New Hampshire, not to mention pile up enough victories to lead the delegate race. Just seems highly unlikely.

          • tabster

            Agreed. He’s done extremely well, but I don’t know how his positions sell outside of primarily white and fairly liberal groups. Many of the upcoming contests are in areas where Democrats are more moderate.

          • markms

            I agree with most of what you write, Gator. Democrats have to be loyal Democrats rather than to marginal Democrats – or to Independents. However, we notice that there have been too many Democrats who have not been as loyal to their own Democratic President lately. Senator Sanders, though, has voted for all of the legislation that the President has signed. He will not support the Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement, however. I believe Sanders was instrumental in turning Secretary Clinton away from her original support of the President on this issue.

            Personally, I am delighted with having to decide between either Sanders or Clinton. I realize that Republicans will do all they can to oppose either a President Sanders or a President Clinton. Democrats have to be united against that probability. Sanders is just as capable of uniting Democrats as Clinton, in my opinion. I doubt whether most Democrats are incapable of compromising for the benefit of either slow-and-steady Clinton progress or for more accelerated Sanders progress. In any case, the voters will decide one way or the other.

          • GatorLegal1

            I too am glad we have good choices this election as Democrats. I was pleased with what O’Malley had to add, too. He was a good voice for Democrats while he was in the race. I too think Sanders has helped steer Clinton a little more to the left. But I think she has also resisted running too much to the left, even if she agrees with doing so, for fear of being seen as too much of an opportunist or weathervane. If my suspicion is correct, than I have to respect her for this pragmatism and long-term view of things. It’s hard to stay the course when expediency of politics now tells you to worry about now now and tomorrow later.

            “Sanders is just as capable of uniting Democrats as Clinton, in my opinion”

            On what basis do you form this opinion? What will he have in common with a Democrat from Missouri, Kentucky, or Georgia – when he has worked as an independent (self-described democratic socialist) from Vermont most of his life – when such fellow Democrats may undoubtedly be needed to help enact the policy he favors as President? Or to help confirm his judicial appointments at all levels of government, for example?

          • markms

            One of the things I’ve admired most about Hillary is her ability to unite Democrats of all political persuasions and her ability to drive Republicans toward total derangement. I’m sure there could someday be some border state Democrats who would find it difficult to support a President Sanders as much as a President Clinton. That does bother me.

          • markms

            A conservative Democrat politician can again someday be more helpful in passing Democratic legislation than a Republican politician. I understand that – and I know Secretary Clinton knows that. That is why I like Secretary Clinton. I like Senator Sanders because he is more of a traditional Democrat from the twentieth century, when the Democratic party was a party of social democrats.. I’m sentimental for the mid-twentieth century – a time when progress was still being made for the middle class – by both parties. Just reading the Republican Platform of 1956 would make modern Americans think it was a socialistic or Democratic platform.

            http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=25838

            I don’t really know whether Senator Sanders is capable of convincing enough voters to support his twentieth century ideas, though. There have been too many years of Americans being convinced by Republicans that government cannot solve problems and that government can only cause problems. Hillary might be able to coax the voters out of their fear of their government more so than Bernie, if she does so very carefully and not too agressively.

          • nycdem

            Sanders’ support is white. His audiences are white. His ‘America’ ad showed us an ‘America’ full of white people. And he has lectured blacks and Hispanics not to ‘vote their race’

            And campaigning with noted Obama hater Cornell West as his token black is … Indicative of Sanders’ attitude.

            Sanders calls Planned Parenthood ‘establishment’. right after saying that fighting the Establishmnet is what his campaign is about.

            If the Democratic Party selects a non-Democrat who represents only white males, wow.

          • vzboxers

            I’m a Hillary supporter and a lifelong yellow dog Democrat, Gator, but IMO, this is not a valid argument against Bernie Sanders and it’s very divisive, too, at a time when we want to unite all Democratic voters. There are plenty of reasons to argue for a Hillary presidency without using this one. JMHO.

          • GatorLegal1

            “divisive”

            How / Why do you think this is divisive?

            I am arguing in my post above that because he has been a registered and acting Independent most of his career, that Sanders’ lack of connections within the Democratic party (as opposed to Hillary’s 40 years of connections within the party, all across the nation) are a comparative weakness and a liability in a general national election in which the nominee will need to unite in common the various demographic, geographic, and political wings of a very diverse Democratic party all across the country.

            Do you believe I am wrong about this? If so, please state why.

          • vzboxers

            Simply because I think your premise is wrong, Gator: as we saw in Obama’s first run, Democrats and others who were rabidly for or against Obama or Hillary came together in the end to elect Obama because they knew what the stakes were, and I believe that’s going to happen again with Bernie or Hillary. I don’t believe that Democrats are going to sit out the 2016 election because, strictly speaking, Bernie is not a lifelong Democrat. And I believe stressing that issue is a divisive move. Of course, I could certainly be wrong, but lord I hope not!

          • GatorLegal1

            I’m not talking strictly about the general election; I think Bernie could sneak out a 285-300 EV win over the GOP nominee by demographics alone. I’m mostly talking about *after* the election – when the real work of governing begins. He just doesn’t have very much political capital built for himself (yet) within the *Democratic* party to cajole enough Democrats from marginally Democratic states and districts to go along with his transformative agenda. I believe this is the first election in which he’s run as a Democrat. Think about that for a moment. If Sanders is elected, the leader of the Democratic Party nationwide would be a man who has been in politics for over 40 years but who has not run as a Democrat until this election. How is he going to call in favors, for example, to push through a judicial nomination stonewalled by Republicans? Or get a piece of legislation passed that he favors? Those are the tough and dirty things that the leader of a national party must reasonably expect to be able to accomplish in order to get anything done.

            (P.S. just because you think my premise is wrong doesn’t make me “divisive”. That’s what Republicans say! Take for example Rubio’s statement that Obama is “divisive” because he visited a mosque the other day. Rubio could have just said he thought Obama was wrong to visit the mosque. But no, he has to lie and call it “divisive” when it is not. Nobody complained when G.W. Bush visited a mosque after 9/11. See a story from WaPo about it here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/02/04/why-obamas-mosque-visit-is-criticized-in-a-way-george-w-bushs-wasnt/ )

          • vzboxers

            As noted, Gator, I’m a Hillary supporter but I think if Bernie wins the nomination and the election, *most* Democrats will work with him and for him, despite that he’s not a life member of the “club.” On the other hand, I’m not at all sure that there are enough Democrats who prefer his “transformative agenda” over incremental progress to give Bernie the nomination. We’ll see.

          • Buford2k11

            I really want to agree with you Gator…I have a problem with your assumption that all Democrats are good…and that having a Network of Democrats is a good as well…I don’t want anymore Blue Dogs…they are worse than most republicans, as you never know what and who they are loyal to…we have a Blue Dog Governor in the thrall of big business, and big oil…Yes, I voted for him, and I am not happy with that fact that I HAD to vote for him, because his gop opposition was really, REALLY a bad person….

  • gnatswatting

    If this were intended just for a New Hampshire audience then it would probably not be starting as late as this (9 PM ET).

  • Wynstone

    So Bernie’s not going to boycott? I heard he had some demands not met.

    • Roehl

      He was outmaneuvered in the last few days when Clinton asserted he seemed so eager for debates yet came down to quibbling over debate minutiae, which didn’t seem consistent.

    • jsnow

      They negotiated and reached a compromise, like responsible adults.

  • eve

    Cannot. watch. them. again. tonight.

  • richo123

    Hillary is aggressive tonight. Interesting change.

    • Roehl

      The crowd didn’t like the “artful smear” line, as accurate as it was. Otherwise, I like this side of Clinton.

      • richo123

        The stuff about Bernie voting twice to deregulate financial derivatives was interesting. Since instruments such as this caused the 2008 crash.

        • Roehl

          I agree. I don’t think Sanders’ supporters would have ever imagined that.

          • elvis2086

            They don’t care. Bernie walks on water!!!

          • gnatswatting

            It’s worse than you think.

        • BlueTex

          The derivatives while culpable, are only a small piece of what caused the crash. S&P and Moody’s granting AAA credit ratings when they knew full well those bonds were B, at best, is also one. Let’s not start the narrative that Bernie’s vote on financial derivatives is similar to Hillary’s on Iraq. Clearly what she was going for there. The causes of the crash were, as Bernie said, based on the financial industry’s model; which is founded on fraud.

    • gnatswatting

      The venomous misogynistic behavior of the cyber “Bernie Bros” has gone on far too long. As we know from the 2004 Swift Boat experience, letting attacks go unanswered for too long without a strong response is perceived as an admission that such attacks are valid.
      http://qz.com/610355/bernie-sanders-progressive-message-is-being-undermined-by-some-of-his-loudest-supporters/

      Bernie Bros are a problem that requires confrontation. Any movement that lays claim to legitimate progressivism cannot simultaneously ignore evident, chronic trends of misogynistic harassment within its ranks. At the end of the day, ignoring Bernie Bros is indistinguishable from outright endorsing them.

  • Decided Voter

    Thank you MSNBC for making this debate available for those of us without a paid TV subscription (unlike CNN).

  • MrBeale
  • Robert

    Bernie’s doing his job pulling Clinton left! Didn’t like Clinton’s answer about the transcripts.

  • Decided Voter

    So much better than the other debates. I think it’s in some part due to O’Malley not being there. It can’t help but be more focused with just two candidates there. Thanks DNC for sanctioning – please take note.

    • Alki

      Really was fun tonight.

  • nero88888

    https://twitter.com/sethbringman/status/695430296796139520

    Hillary is cleaning Bernie’s clock tonight.

    • Hagar32Grady

      I do NOT need your Civil War ……

      • Jason

        I don’t either. But it was totally started by Bernie’s ~innuendo~ and it’s going to finished by Hillary’s facts. Sorry if that makes you uncomfortable.

        • Hagar32Grady

          Not at all ….I must admit I find Bernie more likable than the Clinton’s (Not that I dislike the Clinton’s in the least) but that is as far as it goes…… I’m not a Bernie-bot… but I do see a lot of Clinton-bots coming out of the woodwork , when we should be the adults in the room. The Democratic Candidates , unlike their counter parts are acting civil….their Surrogates should emulate them. Plenty of time for vitriol come September.

  • silverbelle

    (Watching now) Hillary is rolling and smoking Bernie on foreign policy.

    • nero88888

      Bernie goes after Hillary on the Iraq war while he voted for the Afghanistan war.

      https://twitter.com/nprpolitics/status/695443388502536192

      • silverbelle

        “while he voted for the Afghanistan war.”

        I don’t think any sensible person believes we shouldn’t have chased Bin Laden in Afghanistan, where he ran and hid. I’m not sure why you fault Bernie for that.

        • abctefg

          A lot of the world faulted you for going in Afghanistan. Not just after 9-11. But also during the Reagan years.

        • nero88888

          I’m not faulting Bernie for that. I just find it hypocritical of him to go after Hillary for her vote for the Iraq war when he voted for war as well.

  • nero88888

    Glad MOM got out of the race. I love 2 person debates much better.

  • Lat1

    Is it me or is Hillary killing him? This is her best debate by far in my opinion.

    • nero88888

      Hillary is having a very good debate tonight.

    • BarryR

      I missed the first half hour, but she’s dominating this from my point of view.

      • nero88888

        I dvr’ed the debate.

    • rssrai

      She had him making faces every which way. I think that was very telling. Sometimes I thought Senator Sanders was going to get up and stomp out of the debate. He was angry looking most of the debate. I have to say that Senator Sanders is obsessed with wall street. He really doesn’t like bankers. Every word out of his mouth is get rid of the banksters.

      • HKeith

        Every time he says revolution I cringe.

        • Hagar32Grady

          Why? ….would you rather have a Queen and Parliament ? 😉

          • abctefg

            Parliament? Sure. Why not? A monarchy? That’s a bit dated, though, in’nit?

        • Alki

          Taking a position people already agree with does not a revolution make!

      • Hagar32Grady

        Us OLD guys look like that all the time…Get used to it ‘-)

        • could a woman candidate have Bernie’s affect and have any chance of getting elected?

      • nero88888

        Do you post on dkos? I think I saw someone with your name on there.

        The bernie supporters on there are fanatics.

        • Hagar32Grady

          That must make your Brain explode …;-)

          • rssrai

            It does.

        • rssrai

          I do post there, but every time I say something I am attacked. I try to defend Hillary but am called a troll or someone says I am trolling.

          • nero88888

            Bernie bros.

          • Tamburello1994

            I’ve kinda stop going entirely. Its getting downright depressing there.

          • abctefg

            That’s shitty. I’m glad then I make PW my only board then.

            (Group PW hug.)

          • Snakegirl Lyn

            (Hugs)

    • Alki

      Hil destroyed him. His single-issue nonsense doesn’t stand up against actual criticism.

      • BlueTex

        That’s why he did so poorly in Iowa…oh wait…

        • Alki

          Hillary didn’t attack him seriously at all before tonight, presumably over fears it would backfire. Not taking him seriously has been the issue from the start.

        • rssrai

          Senator Sanders only has one thing on his brain. Wall street.
          1. Start a revolution
          2. Get money out of politics
          3. Get the banksters and put them in jail
          4. I forgot.

          • L2thaL

            Profit

  • David Rutawitz

    this might make NH a little closer for clinton.

  • elvis2086

    Bernie brags that he is the longest serving elected independent, but still claims he is an outsider.

    • silverbelle

      “but still claims he is an outsider.”

      He pretty much is. He’s served a long time but has kicked a bunch of sacred cows…and still somehow manages not to be as hated as Ted Cruz. That’s quite a balancing act.

      • David Rutawitz

        30 years in congress is not an outsider

        • nero88888

          I really don’t know how any politician who has been in D.C. as long as Bernie has can call themselves an outsider.

          • David Rutawitz

            none of them can

          • Wynstone

            Ron Paul was a longtime Congressman and maintained outsider status, but it meant not accomplishing much.

        • silverbelle

          “30 years in congress is not an outsider”

          It depends on what they do in that 30 years.

          • David Rutawitz

            Rename 2 post offices

    • Decided Voter

      He said it was the Democrat in the 1988 race that was the spoiler in VT. But using his numbers, if votes for both him and the Democrat were combined (would be 53%), the Republican would’ve been defeated. Hmm.

    • markms

      Sanders has a political history of addressing the controversial “elephants-in-the-room” issues that expedient politicians cannot comfortably address. This has made him a bit of an outsider – even though he gets along personally with everyone in Congress..He knows how things work in the present system, of course. Accordingly, he wants to do as much as he can to reform the cynicism that has built up over the last few decades. It might seem audacious that he is going to try to do this – even though he is a politician himself. But, someone has to address these elephants in the room.

  • John Smith

    I just turned on my TV and saw the next President of the United States beating up an old man.

    • APV

      Is there a rerun of the Obama-McCain debates?

      • GatorLegal1

        LOL

  • Lat1

    All major media outlets have announced that Marco Rubio has won this debate.

    Not showing up is the new first!

  • nero88888

    https://twitter.com/AdamSmith_USA/status/695448405863170048

    Bernie says he polls better against republicans than Hillary.

    • BarryR

      I don’t know Politifact’s sources of data, but according to Real Clear Politics, Bernie polls better against Trump, Cruz, and Rubio than Hillary. According to Huffington Post, Bernie polls better against Rubio and Cruz, Hillary polls better against Trump. So I would say the statement that Bernie polls better is more true than false.

      • GatorLegal1

        ” Bernie polls better against Trump, Cruz, and Rubio than Hillary.”

        In polls taken 6 to 12 months ago that have little bearing on the state of the race today, I think… Someone correct me if there is more-recent data showing the same

      • LarryBurt

        That is marginally true,but the big question to the validity of the numbers is that Bernie has had nearly nothing thrown at him yet, while Clinton is doing as well as she is after 15 years of having every possible lie, innuendo and distortion thrown at her. It’s where they would stand after a Republican onslaught that will ultimately matter. We already know the answer for Hillary.

      • KurtBusiek

        >> I don’t know Politifact’s sources of data,>>

        You could, of course, click the link and see. They do explain what data they used to arrive at their judgment.

  • Decided Voter

    We’ve heard a lot of these topics before. When are they going to ask about immigration, LGBTQ rights, unions or abortion?

    • CB123

      Why would they ask questions on these topics? Both candidates are in agreement and they are not contested issues within a Democratic primary.

      • Decided Voter

        To see how each would go about making progress on them. They agree on many issues – we need to know how they’ll advance them (taking into account personality, experience, knowledge, etc.). Since this is essentially a job interview, those constituencies want to know how they’ll advocate for each of them.

  • Eric Logan

    Bernie was consistently a bit better the rest of the debate, but he was god-awful on foreign policy

  • silverbelle

    (Still watching in real time) I’m a Bernie fan but I think I’m leaning towards Hillary. I still like Bernie’s views but I think Hillary shares most of those views and can make progress on implementing them.

    Obama pushed and broke a lot of boundaries. Maybe Hillary has the courage and chutzpah to continue? Maybe. I still have to watch and listen. I don’t know yet. I do think it’s hilarious that Democrats have two such excellent candidates and Republicans have such a ‘deep bench’ of such miserable candidates.

    • Hagar32Grady

      You have my heart…. The latter about TWO excellent Candidates over what dregs THEY have to offer. Won me over 😉 ….I to am leaning towards HRC but I do not have to make a decision until 4/26…. In the mean time …for doG’s sakes I wish some of these surrogates would not damage the goods before then. Every time there is a debate (or Iowa) they come out of the woodwork. Have they not learned anything (rhetorical).

  • eve

    Did Hillary say she supports the death penalty?

    • BarryR

      For some things, yes.

      • eve

        Well, it is only used for some things. It is a yes or no question. So yes she does. I am very sad to know that. I’m trying so hard to like her.

        • Roehl

          Good to know that in a party that focuses on complex issues like abortion and health care for which there are no binary choices, people will still narrow the death penalty to a simplistic yes or no choice.

          • Wynstone

            Do you think it should be a litmus test though?

          • Roehl

            Litmus tests have destroyed the Republican Party. I don’t believe in them for the Democrats.

          • eve

            Re a litmus test: There we agree, Roehl.

          • BarryR

            Bullshit. You would vote for a candidate who was “pro-life”? You would vote for a candidate who wants to put US combat forces in Syria? You would vote for a candidate who was opposed to Obamacare? You would vote for a candidate who wants to put a means test on Social Security?

          • Roehl

            I would be less likely to vote for those people. And altogether, I probably would need a lot of arm twisting to vote for a candidate who believes in all of those things. That’s always the farthest I can go.

          • LarryBurt

            That is called a non-sequitur.

          • CB123

            Thank you.

          • eve

            Oh, brother. We either have a death penalty or we don’t. It isn’t that hard of a concept. One either is okay with it or not. We can each come to our stand on it through lots of thought and consideration. But in the end it is a yes or no.

          • Roehl

            Goodness gracious. <– that's my version of "Oh, brother." Okay, your turn!

            In the end it is NOT a yes or no. You can have a death penalty with conditions for how strictly it's applied or for why it's applied. That's not an unreasonable middle ground to have. I would say that anyone who glosses over the important details simplifies the discourse to the point where we discard that thoughtful consideration that is made.

          • eve

            There is no middle ground to being dead or alive. To say there is a middle ground is one of the silliest things I have ever heard.

          • Roehl

            LOL, okay. You’re missing the point, and I imagine it’s on purpose, so there we are.

          • David Rutawitz

            all murderers should receive the death penalty? its not as black and white as youre making it out to be

          • CB123

            While I oppose the death penalty, no, it isn’t that simple. One can support a higher standard of proof or a more heinous crime as prerequisites for its use, for example. In the same way that some abortion-rights advocates call for use of the procedure that is “safe, legal and rare,” there can be limited and qualified support for the death penalty. Myself, I think it would be better on many levels to just get rid of it, but it’s not a simple, binary choice.

            And besides, a president can only affect whether it’s done in the federal system, where its usage is very rare. The president has nothing to say, legally speaking about the absolute horrendous and irresponsible overuse of the death penalty in a number of states, particularly Texas.

        • nero88888

          Let me ask you something, if one of your loved ones was murdered (god forbid), would you want that murderer to die? We can say oh we don’t support the death penalty, but having one of your loved ones viciously murdered would most likely change your opinion about the death penalty.

          • I’m the father of a homicide victim. I am against the death penalty.

          • GatorLegal1

            I am truly sorry for your loss, gypc_dave.

          • KurtBusiek

            We don’t decide this stuff by asking the most emotionally-fraught people involved to make the choice.

          • CB123

            No, not really. I would be perfectly contented to have such a person suffer in prison for decades.

  • eve

    OT:
    I have been following the debates and town halls on twitter a little bit. I must say I am surprised at how silly and useless Chris Cillizza’s tweets are. I am all for a lot of humor, but that seems to be all he does is joke. No substance.

    • chisholm

      yeah he is silly and banal

    • At least you don’t have to read an entire column before realizing that he’s an imbecile.

    • abctefg

      The name rang a bell. I googled him. Just a name for me.

    • he is a twit

  • L2thaL

    yeah, McConnell will get right on that

  • LarryBurt

    I started out supporting Clinton and in spite of a few less than perfect moments, still do. I suspect committed Sanders supporters came out feeling the same way about Bernie. The big question for me, is did either of them change anyone’s mind, or at least get someone off the fence. On that, they both did well enough and miss-stepped enough that I have no idea.

  • Decided Voter

    That was wonderful!

    • L2thaL

      Agree

      • Decided Voter

        I feel good in both my head and heart. 😉

    • elvis2086

      So good, i would have a cigarette if I smoked.

  • i’m sorry but campaign finance is a losing issue.

    • GatorLegal1

      It is now because the current rules – or complete lack thereof – are totally screwing the American people out of their representative democracy.

  • Eric Logan

    Score by quarter

    1- Clinton 7 Sanders 10
    2- Clinton 8 Sanders 9
    3- Clinton 9 Sanders 3
    4- Clinton 7 Sanders 9

    Sanders better of the two for 3/4 of the debate, but really poor in the third (foreign policy) quarter, which made it basically a draw.

    • James E Fallen

      In other words, a tie. A coin flip to declare the winner would have been appropriate.

      • GatorLegal1

        But enough about Iowa… 😉

    • rssrai

      I think Hillary won the debate because she finally got Senator Sanders to back down from questioning her integrity of taking wall street money. He would not look at her in the face and say to her that she was corrupt which he has been deceptively implying almost at every debate.

    • Alki

      Hillary destroyed him in the first quarter

    • abctefg

      Could you explain your metric?

  • silverbelle

    I’ve watched all of the debates for both parties. Watching the Democratic debates is invigorating and an intellectual challenge; I need to keep up with what’s going on in the world and how it’s being dealt with. Watching the Republican debates is like watching WWE; all I need is to be deliberately ignorant and proud of it.

    • L2thaL

      Have they even asked the republicans about Flint?

      • silverbelle

        “Have they even asked the republicans about Flint?”

        No. This was a Democratic debate. Perhaps Flint will be a topic in the next Republican debate.

        • GatorLegal1

          “Perhaps Flint will be a topic in the next Republican debate”

          I’ll believe that when I see it. I think they will avoid it like the plague because it only makes the entire Republican party look bad.

          • silverbelle

            “I’ll believe that when I see it.”

            Yup. Me, too. That’ll happen when whipped cream becomes a weight loss food.

        • L2thaL

          There are a few governors on that side. One would think it’s a valid topic 😉

    • BlueTex

      That’s because Hillary and Bernie look like the Broncos vs. The Panthers…and the Repub debates look like the bowling tournament from The Big Lebowski.

      • Wynstone

        “Donnie, you’re out of your element!”

        • BlueTex

          I’m just waiting for someone to say, “joo don mess wit da jeesus.”

          • Wynstone

            You know Marco could do that accent if he wanted to.

      • silverbelle

        “That’s because Hillary and Bernie look like the Broncos vs. The
        Panthers…and the Repub debates look like the bowling tournament from
        The Big Lebowski.”

        I don’t follow football. I do bowl. I use my Grandmother’s bowling ball. It has her name on it. I’ve never seen The Big Lebowski.

        • BlueTex

          Seeing this again made me think how appropriate my original comment really was…

          Don’t try this at home, Silverbelle…

          • silverbelle

            “Don’t try this at home, Silverbelle”

            I won’t since I don’t get it 🙂

          • BlueTex

            Um…you may want to hit the play button in the middle…

          • abctefg

            *This is bowling not Nam. There are rules.*

            Lol.

            (I’ve heard much about this movie but I too have never seen it.)

        • eve

          It is a great movie.

      • spine

        Great comparison!

    • spine

      Courageous! I wasn’t able to watch the 6th debate till the end. Only soft ball questions from the moderators and to much grandstanding, disrespect for the current President, exaggeration, bullshit and outright lying by the candidates. I think most candidates on that stage would be great for becoming innkeepers in a poor part of town with lots of alcoholic bluster and bragging. Except for Kasich and Bush. They could only be successful as retirees bloviating of their great times in an inexistent past. I wouldn’t like to see anyone of them on a local schoolboard or in any public office.

  • S1AMER

    Every time I see Bernie Sanders, I wonder about this: Al Gore got creamed for sighing one time during a debate. Sanders makes awful faces all the time, but nobody seems to mind. Somebody, please, explain the difference.

    • Decided Voter

      Al Gore came across as an “intellectual” who was put off by others (Bush) and Sanders comes across as your grumpy grandpa who cares and is mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. It’s his schtick. I believe that is why people are okay with it.

      • jeremy tranor

        Maybe he had gas!

        • GatorLegal1

          I dunno. I smile when I have gas and then try to hide it! 😉

          TMI?

          But seriously, folks….

          • abctefg

            Some gas just can’t be hidden.

      • Democrats are OK with it.

        Republicans see him as the candidate of “free stuff.”

  • David Rutawitz

    draw? im sorry, but clinton was in complete control the entire debate.

    • Decided Voter

      As she usually is. She can answer almost anything. I saw passion there too.

  • MrBeale

    Both did very well but I’ll give Clinton the edge on this one. Clinton gave some of the best responses to the e-mails and her Wall Street ties she’s given so far, whereas Sanders still struggles to talk in-depth about foreign policy.

  • elvis2086

    I’m still waiting for Sanders to tell “we the people” how is is going to get congress to agree to his pie in the sky plans. Why don’t the moderators ask that one question – How?

    • GatorLegal1

      Because they already know his answer: “by breaking up the big banks”

      It’s almost as bad as Republicans’ answer for everything: “more tax cuts”

      (if only for the reason that uniform answers to vastly differing problems only causes more problems)

      • L2thaL

        This is my rub. We’re going to risk tossing everything Obama has done for this? We’re going to risk Supreme Court appointments for this? F*&()^(*%&^$%^%#%#@!

      • elvis2086

        GatorLegal1, How?

        • GatorLegal1

          How what? I think Sanders hasn’t pragmatically though through some of his plans, like breaking up the big banks. Easier said than done, especially when he doesn’t have much political capital within the Democratic party to carry out such ambitious plans.

          • markms

            Whether or not Sanders can be politically pragmatic in advocating for the break up of the big banks, we all realize that the big banks have to be broken up – sooner or later. The United States should not pragmatically be resigned to being an oligarchy – whether or not it is a Democratic oligarchy or a Republican oligarchy..

          • GatorLegal1

            “we all realize that the big banks have to be broken up”

            Republicans don’t realize that. They would do no such thing. Unfortunately, they control a lot of the levers of government right now all across the land. In order to break up the big banks (and fully reverse Citizens United, really tackle gun issues, etc.) we will definitely need fewer Republican obstructionists. In order to have fewer Republican obstructionists, by necessity we will need to *elect* more Democratic pragmatists, centrists who can win races in places that have been electing Republicans in recent years. Just my opinion.

          • markms

            Oh, I know all that. As long as there are Republicans, we all have to live with the reality of having to compromise through their dogged pursuit of oligarchy. I think good Democrats should be members of the party that unabashedly tries to fight oligarchy. Breaking up the banks is a start. Being reticent in fighting monopoly is only going to slow down the process of reform. Teddy Roosevelt was not reticent in bringing about such reforms in the early twentieth century. In any case, Republicans are better at making their case against government and reforms than Democrats are for making their case for progress. Republicans aren’t timid. Democrats can try to attract conservative Democrats into the party in order to try to get them to vote for Democratic legislation, though.

          • CB123

            There really aren’t very many conservative Democrats left in Congress. Most of the ones that were left lost to Republicans in 2010.

          • markms

            You are absolutely right that conservative Democrats are usually defeated. It seems they are defeated for being either too Democratic or too Republican. This was evident even more in 2014 than in 2010. But,Gator.egal1 is right that there needs to somehow be more pragmatism in politics on the part of Democrats in order to assuage fears in the Republican Party that Democrats aren’t as pragmatic as they are :). He believes that Secretary Clinton is more capable of not scaring independent voters in conservative states into the Republican Party. He is probably right.

          • CB123

            I’m not concerned about fears in the Republican Party about Democrats. But I am very concerned about making sure we don’t push truly nonaligned voters in that direction.

          • markms

            Truly non-aligned voters might indeed be pushed into the Republican Party more than into the Democratic Party. The fact that they are afraid to align themselves probably means they are motivated by fear more than they are by Democratic politics in general. Democrats have to inspire voters to come into the party. Republicans have no problem scaring voters to come into their party.

          • CB123

            Not to mention the fact that even Sanders essentially conceded the Republicans are going to at least control the House in 2017.

  • spiff

    I watched the debate tonight as well, I don’t see it swaying anyone from either side. Hilary was her “factual” pragmatic self even though she seemed almost angry at times. Bernie always seems to repeat, time after time the SAME buzzwords and phrases as he has for the past 25 years. It gets very trying at times even though I fully support everything he says (HC as well). However what he proposes simply is not possible with the current state of affairs in Congress. The Republicans will control the House no matter who wins the White House, IF we win back the Senate we are looking at a 51-49 or 52-48 at best. So, in pragmatic terms the Republican Majority in The House (I.E Ryan) will NEVER call a vote for a single payer health system or “free college or healthcare”, because it means raising taxes (and DON’T write back regarding the reduction of health premiums, the Republicans will look no further than “raising taxes”), and the top 1% which they represent, will be hit the hardest on that. The President cannot break up banks or huge corporations with executive action, Congress has to do it, as they did with Rockefeller. To me the SupPACs are a problem, as is income inequality, its just not the most pressing issues we face. So to sum up, absolutely nothing imo of his “political revolution” will be accomplished in the slightest(and revolutions get bloody). Lastly, Bernie will be destroyed by the right-wing mud slinging machine. I can just see the flag with a “hammer and sickle” on it with his face split screen calling him a socialist, because most Americans are fucking stupid (and non “worldly”) assume its the same as a communist. Or they will use something equivalent of the Government wiill control almost every part of your lives. An exaggeration for sure, but not to far from the truth, not that the truth will matter for most Americans interpretations. And because he is genuine and sincere in every sense of the words, as is his wife, they cant and will not fight back in the way HC will, and needs to.
    I will vote for Clinton because I DO believe she is the best qualified for the job, hands down, plus she has a prior president as husband that she can turn to for advisement, if needed. As far as taking that $600,000 from GS, I can care less, 99% of people would take that money to speak about your own life, including me. HC policies mirror those of almost all progressives, so she will forward our and Obama’s agenda.and its time by far that we had a woman as President.

  • Patterman

    MSNBC put all the other networks to shame. I’m sick of the constant equating of MSNBC to FOX, as if they were equally “balanced,” “left” and “right.” One is an actual news organization. The other is the propaganda arm of the Republican Party. Pure and simple.

  • james

    I cannot wait until Sanders pounces on Clinton for bragging about her chummy relations with that war criminal Henry Kissinger.

    She clearly has no clue what the left wants in a candidate.

    • Rhysem

      “She clearly has no clue what the EXTREME left wants in a candidate.” There fixed it for you. I’m “left” as are 90% of the posters on this board and I’m comfortable with either of them. Although, I will likely vote for HRC because she’s practical enough to get something done in Washington, where as Bernie is living in dreamland given the current state of Capital Hill.

      • Lumpenproletariat

        ‘”She clearly has no clue what the EXTREME left wants in a candidate.’

        The “extreme” left are the anarchists and actual capital-S Socialists who for the most part refuse to participate in what they see as a illegitimate system, or else they cast protest votes for SPUSA or whatever.

        Characterizing anybody to the left of, say, CNN, as “extreme” is not going to endear any of them to vote your way, y’know.

    • alansnipes

      You have no clue how to make change.

  • drzaius

    How anyone could watch the GOP Gong show and the Dem debates and think any of the GOP candidates were qualified for this job is amazingly unbelievable.

  • alansnipes

    Sanders has consistently failed in not saying how he would make change with a Republican Congress.

    • S1AMER

      Unicorns and fairy dust.

  • docb

    A real debate on issues and history…Refreshing!

  • tabster

    One of my worries about Sanders is that his support relies heavily on Millennials and that crowd is flaky. They’re really passionate about Sanders now, but they’ll largely disappear on election day in 2018. The key for Sanders to really build a movement is to talk to these supporters and get to them to understand that the fight against the oligarchy is going to be a long, long battle. They need to get behind Clinton if she’s the nominee, they need to be engaged and vote in 2018 during the midterms, and they need to be engaged in 2020. It will take years of sustained effort to finally end this age of oligarchy that we’re in.