5th Democratic Debates Winners and Losers


Wednesday, November 27, 2019



Tom Steyer 


After the last two debates with this man on stage, people are still asking one simple question: Who is Tom Steyer? The billionaire turned presidential candidate once again felt like the elephant in the room. However, when he got time to speak, he said all the right things. He sounded like a Democrat, he stayed to his talking points, and also went after his opponents when needed. The problem is that he simply did not sound like a candidate. Imagine if, in 2016, candidate Donald Trump debated against Robby Mook, Hillary’s campaign manager. This is what it felt like with Steyer on stage. The billionaire sounded more like a campaign manager advocating for his favorite candidate, rather than an actual candidate for office. It is very likely that Steyer will be on stage for the December debates, so it’ll be interesting to see what, if anything changes with Steyer. 


Andrew Yang 


The leader of the YangGang is not a debate loser this time around because he had bad answers or because he was attacked. He actually had some good answers to the questions that were asked of him. However, there were two major issues with Andrew Yang during this debate. 

The first issue was that he didn’t seem like himself during these debates. At times, he was slow to get a sentence out and, other times, he simply froze up while answering questions. This was very uncharacteristic of Yang, who usually has a lot to say. 

The other problem was his lack of speaking time. He had just six and a half minutes out of the two hour debate according to the New York Times. While the #YangBlackOut movement is going strong on social media, it is not translating well into the debates, and it is hurting Mr. Yang. The one thing that will keep Yang’s campaign afloat is the slowly dwindling field, and keeping his numbers up in polls to stay in the debates. 


Tulsi Gabbard 


Tulsi absolutely did not have a good night this time around. She stook to very generic talking points that she has run with throughout her campaign, and also did not respond well to criticism from her opponents. 

She was attacked by Kamala for frequently appearing on Fox during the Obama years and criticizing the former President, which she had essentially a non-response too. She was also attacked by Pete over here meetings with Al-Assad and what Pete called “bad judgment.” Tulsi was made to look like a punching bag for the rest of the candidates, and that was pretty much the only thing she succeeded in that night. Much like Yang, she is only staying afloat due to the grassroots efforts. However, this will only get you so far in a presidental campaign.



Pete Buttigieg 


Mayor Pete is, in my mind, the MVP of this debate. After recent polling showed him up big in New Hampshire over the likes of Sanders, Warren, and Biden, the South Bend mayor had all the spotlight on him. And he took the time to shine. 

Early on, he was attacked by Kamala for the way he has been disconnected from black voters in his own city. He responded with humility, saying that he welcomes the challenge of getting to know people that may not yet know him. He also had probably the clapback of the night against Tulsi, who tried to attack Pete on his military experience. Tulsi attempted to say her experience meeting with foreign leaders makes her a better potential commander-in-chief, which left the door wide open for Pete to mention her time with Syria’s Al-Assad. Pete showed not only why he should be elected President, but why the Democratic voters should pick him to be commander-in-chief. Pete showed perfectly why his rise in the polls should not be taken as a fluke. 


Amy Klobuchar


If it wasn’t for Mayor Pete’s performance today, Senator Klobuchar would be my MVP for this debate. However, in such a crowded field, it’s not a bad idea to take second place once in a while. 

Amy did everything right in this debate. From showing why she is electable, to telling us how she is a problem solver, to continuing to show why far-left policies will not work for everyday Americans. She even had the line of the night that got the most applause from the audience, touting her ability to fundraise from ex-boyfriends. While this is an unconventional way to convey a message, she got the point across and continues to show why she is best to be the next President. While she is not the most liberal of candidates, it will be interesting to see how she does when the primary voting official starts on February 3rd, especially with moderate voters. 


Voters of the Democratic Party 

While Mayor Pete performed the best during this debate, the ones that benefit the most from this debate are the Democratic voters. Why? The field is slowly dwindling, and those who have no business being on stage are being ousted by the DNC’s high standard for polling and donors, ensuring that the candidates with an actual chance of winning are the ones on stage. 

What this means is that candidates like Booker, Steyer and even Gabbard, who barely make the debates every time around, will probably be out of the race before the first caucus of February 3rd. 

For Democrats seeking the best possible candidate to take on President Trump next fall, this is the best thing that can happen to them right before the year is up. Realistically, there are only about seven candidates that have a realistic mathematical chance of influencing this race in any way. If the Iowa Caucus on Feb 3rd is voting on just those seven candidates, this will turn into a very interesting Democratic Primary.

Jose Rodriguez, who also goes by “Francisco,” is a senior at John Jay College of Criminal Justice double majoring in Political Science and Economics. He has previously served as President of his College Republican chapter, along with being a staff member on a gubernatorial race in New York.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.

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About Jose Rodriguez

John Jay College

Jose Rodriguez, who also goes by “Francisco,” is a senior at John Jay College of Criminal Justice double majoring in Political Science and Economics. He has previously served as President of his College Republican chapter, along with being a staff member on a gubernatorial race in New York.

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