Orange Street News


OSN DEBATE COVERAGE: Debate Candidates Trash Each Other, Ignore Young People

By Hilde Kate Lysiak 

LAS VEGAS, N.V. —For younger voters, the Democratic presidential debate offered little substance on their most important issues, with candidates instead dedicating much of their time on stage to throwing punches at each other.

While issues like the environment, debt, and social issues, consistently rank high among polling for younger voters, most of the debate time was spent with candidates trying to take down each other, especially former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg who had barely settled at the podium at his first presidential debate when he found himself under fire.

Senator Elizabeth Warren got gasps from the audience after saying “I’d like to talk about who we are running against, a billionaire who calls woman fat broads and horse faced lesbians and no I’m not talking about Donald Trump I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.”

Sen. Warren continued, “Democrats are not going to win if we have a nominee who has a history of hiding his tax returns, of harassing woman, and of supporting racist policies like red lining and stop and frisk.”

Former Vice President Joe Biden hit Bloomberg on his work as Mayor of New York City. “He has not managed his city very very well when he was there. He didn’t get a whole lot done. He had stop and frisk throwing close to five million young black men up against a wall.”

Senator Bernie Sanders also attacked Bloomberg’s previous job performance: “Mr. Bloomberg had policies in New York City of stop and frisk which went after African-American and Latino people in an outrageous way.”

Mr Bloomberg defended himself by claiming he was the one who could defeat President Trump. “I think we have two questions to face tonight: one is, who can beat Donald Trump and number two, who can do the job if they get to the White House. And I would argue that I am the candidate that can do exactly both of those things. I’m a New Yorker. I know how to take on an arrogant con man like Donald Trump.”

But Bloomberg’s defense did nothing to stop the attacks.

Mayor Pete Buttigieg attacked both Bloomberg and Sen. Bernie Sanders, when he said they would fail to inspire voters “if they got to choose between a socialist who thinks capitalism is the root of all evil and a billionaire who thinks money ought to be the root of all power.”

He continued, “We shouldn’t have to choose between one candidate who wants to burn this party down and another candidate who wants to buy this party out.”

After more than twenty minutes had passed, and having barely gotten a word in, Mayor Bloomberg raised his hands up in the air and asked the room, “What am I, chicken liver?”

All the attacks and counter attacks left less time for the candidates to discuss their plans for the country if they were to become the next President.

The student debt was only briefly mentioned and the national debt received zero mention, which is a record 22 trillion dollars and is expected to grow to 98 percent of GDP by 2030.

Millennials and Gen Z-ers will be one-third of the eligible voting population in 2020. It wasn’t until more than an hour into the debate when a one issue important for young people, climate change, was discussed.

Every candidate on stage except Mayor Bloomberg has voiced support for the Green New Deal, a proposed package of United States legislation that aims to address climate change and economic inequality.  Polls show that as many as 75 percent of millenials somewhat support the proposal.

Mayor Bloomberg began by saying he would rejoin the Paris Accord on the first day of his presidency. Sen. Warren said the answer will come by investing in science, telling the audience, “I believe in science and I believe that the way we are going to deal with the problem is by increasing ten fold our investment in science.”

“Much that is what is needed has not been invented,” she added.

But it didn’t take long before the candidates went right back to arguing.

After watching the back and forth, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar said. “I was thinking there should be a boxing rematch on Saturday in Vegas and those guys should go down there.”

Millennials and Gen Z-ers will be one-third of the eligible voting population in 2020.

Historically, this age group has had low turnout rates in elections, but this trend changed with the 2018 midterm election, with 3.3 million of millennials voting early.Pew Research released a report on voter turnout in the 2018 elections, and its analysis of Census Bureau data shows that millennial turnout surged to 42 percent, a full 20 percentage points higher than the cohort’s rate in 2014.

The Nevada voting deadline is February 22, 2020.

4 comments on “OSN DEBATE COVERAGE: Debate Candidates Trash Each Other, Ignore Young People

  1. Denise Clark
    February 20, 2020

    Thanks, Ms Lysiak! Thanks for telling it like it is!


  2. Bob Lamm
    February 22, 2020

    As a lifelong New Yorker, I’d like to express my strong support for the important and valid attacks on Michael Bloomberg by Elizabeth Warren and the other candidates. When someone is in a position to buy a presidential nomination, of course when you finally have an opportunity to confront him in person you should do so right from the first moment.

    I agree that more focus should be given to issues facing our country’s young people.


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  4. Pingback: OSN Top Stories of the Month February | Orange Street News

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