The January Democratic debate stage will see the smallest number and least diverse field of candidates, but if you are watching for the fireworks that can spark on the Des Moines stage, those are likely to be just as loud.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders are likely to spar over a comment Sanders allegedly made about a woman’s chances of getting elected president in the United States.
And Joe Biden, the consistent front runner in many polls, is an inviting target for someone looking for a viral moment.
The candidates participating in Tuesday’s debate are:
Former Vice President Joe Biden
Mayor Pete Buttigieg
Sen. Amy Klobuchar
Entrepreneur Tom Steyer
Sen. Bernie Sanders
Sen. Elizabeth Warren
Check out the livestream and live updates below to see how the debate went.
What did they say?
11:15 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: As the debate ended, Sanders and Warren came together on the stage following their exchange on whether a woman can be elected president.
From the looks of it, it was a frosty exchange.
11:05 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: The debate ends with these closing statements:
Klobuchar: “It is easy to hurl insults,” Klobuchar said. “What is hard is bringing people together and finding common ground instead of scorched earth.”
Steyer: He asks Iowans to “take back the country” and “save the world.”
Warren: Warren said she came to the stage with “a heart filled with hope” for the future of the country. She also talked about some of her programs.
Sanders: He tells Democrats to “think big, not small” to beat Trump.
Biden: “Character is on the ballot,” Biden said. Another Trump term would lead to permanent damage to the country, he adds.
Buttigieg: Buttigieg says we have the opportunity to change the direction of the country.
What about a debate with Trump?
10:50 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Biden is asked about how he would fare in a debate against Trump.
“I’ve been the object of his affection now more than anyone else on this stage,” Biden said. He said he would “love” a debate against Trump, especially on the economy.
Climate change, part two
10:45 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Buttigieg is asked what he would do about factories and farms that have been flooded. He says federal funds would be used to help people relocate from the areas climate change had affected.
Steyer said he'll declare climate change a "state of emergency" on day one in office. He has painted himself as the climate change candidate.
“I would do it from the standpoint of environmental justice and make sure we go to the black and brown communities where you can’t breathe the air or drink the water that comes out of the tap safely,” Steyer said. “But I also know this. We’re going to create really good-paying union jobs across this country. It’s going to be the biggest job program in American history.”
10:33 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Wolf Blitzer asks Biden is Trump will be “vindicated” if he is acquitted in the Senate impeachment trial.
Biden says no, he won’t, and if he did, it wouldn’t matter He talks about Trump’s lies against his “surviving son.”
Blitzer asks Klobuchar about being a juror in the Senate on the trial. “It’s a decency check,” she says, comparing it to the McCarthy hearings.
Childcare is addressed
10:20 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: What would you do to help parents pay for child care, the panel is asked. Buttigieg said childcare costs are pushing Americans out of the workforce and it makes “no sense.” He says he would make sure that childcare is no more than 7% of a family’s income.
Warren says her 2-cent wealth tax would pay for universal child care, though some would pay a small amount.
Sanders says this country must have universal child care – the money would be there but for corporate greed and military spending, he said.
Biden says he has a plan for free universal infant care. He recounts the story of his experience as a single parent after his wife and daughter were killed in a car wreck.
How is the time?
A look at health care
10:02 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Sanders is asked how he can justify the cost of his health care plan. He says his Medicare for All proposal, will end up cutting costs for Americans, not rising costs. It ends deductibles and co-payments, Sanders says. It will cut health care profits and that money will go to Americans.
Does Sanders owe voters an explanation of how much health care would cost, Biden is asked? Yes, Biden says. Sanders’ plan would double the entire federal budget, Biden said. Biden would redo Obamacare to fix it.
Klobuchar says she agrees with many things Sanders has proposed, but not this plan. She would build on the Affordable Care Act.
Warren says she will cut prescription drug costs and has a plan for her version of Medicare for All.
Buttigieg says his plan – Medicare for All who want it – is one that anyone can choose if they want, but they don’t have to. In addition, he said, it’s paid for.
Warren says that it is not true that Buttigieg’s plan would be enough to help all Americans.
Bernie and Elizabeth on a woman as president
9:44 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Sanders says he did not tell Warren that a woman could not win the election.
“Well, as a matter of fact, I didn’t say it,” Sanders said of a report that Sanders told Warren that a woman could not win a presidential race during a 2018 meeting.
Sanders said it was “incomprehensible” that he would hold such a view. He said Hillary Clinton got 3 million more votes than Trump,
Warren says she has no interest in getting into a fight with Sanders.
“I disagreed,” Warren said of what she did when Sanders told her no woman could win. “Bernie is my friend, and I’m not here to fight with Bernie.”
“Look at the men on this stage,” Warren said. “Collectively, they have lost 10 elections," she said. “The only people on this stage who have won every single election that they’ve been in are the women. Amy and me.”
Klobuchar says a woman can win a presidential election -- you have to be competent, she said. “I have won (elections) and brought people along with me.”
On trade and the USMCA
9:33 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Sanders says he is not willing to compromise on a new trade deal with Mexico and Canada unless it includes climate control regulations. Warren says she supports the U.S.-Mexico, Canada trade deal (USMCA), but we should get an even better deal.
Klobuchar supports the USMCA to have a trade block that can take on China.
Buttigieg says he supports USMCA.
Biden says environmentalists and workers will have to be at the table for any trade agreements in a Biden administration. Sanders says the only reason trade agreements exist is to increase the profits of large multinational companies.
Would Biden meet with the leader of North Korea?
9:29 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Biden says he would not meet with North Korea without preconditions. He says Kim Jong Un called him a rabid dog.
Steyer would not meet with him either, he said.
Would Buttigieg allow Iran to be a nuclear power?
9:24 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Buttigieg says he would not let Iran have nuclear weapons. Klobuchar says she would not, either.
You must have a plan
9:22 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Any circumstances where you would take military action without congressional approval. An imminent threat, she said. We have to have a plan when we go into war to get out of it, she said. We have no strategy.
Get the troops out
9:15 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Warren is asked if she would leave some combat troops in Afghanistan. She says she would not. Biden says he would leave special forces in the area to take on terrorists.
Buttigieg is asked who is right.
He says the problem is that more troops are being sent there. No troops should be sent when there is an alternative, Buttigieg said. Sanders says we need to rebuild the United Nations and the State Department to stop endless wars.
9 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: The debate has begun and the first question is "Why (in light of the military action in Iran) are you the best prepared to be commander-in-chief.
Sanders points out that he did not vote for the war in Iraq because he felt it would pitch the Middle East into chaos.
Biden says he made a mistake to vote for the war in Iraq. He said he was asked to end that war once he and Barack Obama were elected.
Wolf Blitzer asks Klobuchar why her position in the U.S. Senate better prepares her to be president then Buttigieg’s military experience would. She says her experience in the Senate put her in a position to see what happens with policy. She says the real problem now is with Trump and war powers.
Buttigieg says his experience in the military gives him a unique perspective. “There are enlisted people that I served with, barely old enough to remember those votes on the authorization after 9/11 on the war in Iraq,” Buttigieg said.
Warren says she is on the Armed Services Committee and has visited troops around the world. She says she would fight for servicemen. She would cut the military budget, she said.
Steyer says he has traveled around the world and understands how the U.S. interacts with other countries. He, too, would cut the budget for the Defense Department.
Trump backs Bernie, sort of
8:55 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Trump, speaking at a rally in Milwaukee, said he did not believe that Bernie Sanders told Elizabeth Warren that a woman cannot be elected president of the United States.
“I don’t believe that Bernie said that. I really don’t,” Trump said. Could a woman win the election? “That could happen,” Trump said.
Bloomberg would be there if they let him
8:41 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg had posted an ad taking a swipe at the Democratic National Committee and the rules it went by to decide who will be on stage for the Democratic primary debates.
"The party rules prevent me from debating," Bloomberg says in the ad. "If they change the rules, I'd be happy to join it."
Who is ahead in Iowa?
8:30 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: With only weeks to go before the Iowa caucus, the first vote of the 2020 presidential election season, polls are showing a tight race with the top Democratic candidates bunched together. A Des Moines Register/CNN poll has Sanders in the lead with 20%, followed by Warren, Buttigieg and Biden close behind. CBS News’ poll has Biden, Buttigieg and Sanders tied at 23% with Warren polling at 16 percent. A Monmouth poll out Monday has Biden on top with 24%.
What is Trump doing?
8:15 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: The president is in Milwaukee tonight ahead of the Democratic debate. He is holding a campaign rally.
One hour to go
8 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: The debate begin in one hour.
They are undecided now
7:45 p.m. ET Jan. 14 2020: As many as 60% of Iowa voters say they are undecided as to who they will vote for in the Iowa Caucus to be held Feb. 3, according to CNN.
Senators leaving the trail
7:30 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Three senators who will be on stage tonight -- Klobuchar, Sanders and Warren -- will be pulled from the campaign trail beginning next week when the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump begins. Senators are jurors in impeachment trials.
Welcome to live updates
7 p.m. ET Jan. 14, 2020: Good evening and welcome to live updates from the January Democratic debate. The debate begins at 9 p.m. ET
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