The first debate for the Democratic primary is in the bag, and tonight we have the second group of candidates! Here’s the 411 for tonight’s event.
When is it and where can you watch it?
The second Democratic primary debate will be broadcast on Thursday, June 27 at NBC News, MSNBC and Telemundo, from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern Time. NBC will also be livestreaming the debate on its websites (NBCNews.com and MSNBC.com), and on Facebook, @MSNBC, and YouTube.
Lineup for Night 2
Clicking on the candidate names will send you to a guide focused on their stances on a variety of key issues.
“In the late-18th century, when running for Congress was still a pretty novel thing to do, James Madison and James Monroe faced off for the same Virginia Senate seat in 1789. When they did, the two felt debate was so important to voter’s decision-making process that they split the costs of a shared carriage, traveled from town to town in their district and debated one another in taverns. Madison won, but Monroe was elected to the Senate by the state legislature the next year.” Source
Value of Debates
Debates during the general election don’t seem to change anyone’s minds, but they’re very valuable during the primaries, particularly in the early stages. At this point, the vast majority of voters are not aware of who all the candidates are or what they stand for. Democratic debates have generally been pretty civil, so I expect they’ll get to talk about the issues if only for short bursts of time.
The media and pundits will be looking for the “winner” or “loser” of the debates. I think this is foolhardy. If the point of having debates is to inform voters, then “calling it” just points to the media trying to shape the narrative. I encourage viewers to walk away from the debates with a handful of candidates that they are interested in supporting further, not just one.
Consider turning off the TV and social media right after the debate and think about it for a minute. Come up with your own opinions — trust yourself.
Finally, I wrote an open letter to the media about how I think they should, and shouldn’t, cover the debates. It’s really important they get it right.