On Thursday night, the second half of the vast 20 candidate field of democratic presidential hopefuls met in Miami for the second night of their two night debate event.
This night featured four of five of the consistent polling front runners and it showed when compared to last night’s discussion. Here are my take-aways.
Kamala Harris rises in front of the national audience: She was the “Adult in the room” during the biggest candidate scrum of the evening early on, and she had Joe Biden on the defensive over a race issue earlier in his career that effected her when she was a child growing up. There were questions about her going off script before the evening and it appears they’ve been answered for now.
Joe Biden takes his bumps but survives: The former Vice President took some damage on Thursday night from the field, but he will still be the projected leader in front of an electorate that knows him more than any other candidate in this massive field. He’ll recover with earned media and get out the vote efforts and be more prepared next time.
Buttigieg admits he got it wrong: It was a tough political situation that no one else in that field had to answer for, but Buttigieg coming off a controversial shooting in South Bend (story HERE) admitted he did not diversify his department enough before a controversial police shooting that took place in South Bend earlier this month. Early responses online respected Buttigieg’s upfront response and ability to take responsibility, but the questions will remain.
Bernie stays on message: The second time Presidential hopeful stayed on familiar turf on Thursday night. Along with Joe Biden he was a target with some of his plans to pay for his proposals brought into question. He admitted that taxes would likely will go up and that could hurt his electability if he’s the nominee
Kirsten Gillibrand rises, the rest of the field doesn’t: The embattled New York Senator, who was on the bubble to make the debates was on the aggressive on Thursday night and did well.
The others? Not so much.
Yang, Williamson, Bennett, Swalwell all failed to make an impression with voters and they were longshots coming into the evening.
Warren and Harris win debate week: Really, Warren should have been on stage tonight but in an effort to eliminate the “JV Debate” there was a random drawing and she ended up on the first night. It worked in her favor, she performed well and that field wasn’t in the same league as what we saw tonight.
On night two, California Senator, Kamala Harris, hit her marks and was widely praised for her bold attacks on Joe Biden and the rest of the field during the debate.
Let’s see if this translates into a post debate bump for the two.