Twelve angry men and women from the US Democratic party crowded the stage Tuesday night at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio. They were there to master-debate, and that’s what they did.
Here’s an overview in case you missed it:
Sadly Beto O’Rourke did not skateboard across the stage, but he did spout some centrist rhetoric and tried his best to nab the coveted title of having the lowest IQ onstage.
Joking aside, having a high IQ is more likely to work against you in US politics these days, so don’t count him out just yet.
Kamala Harris and Cory Booker talked about their precious values, while Tulsi Gabbard had a contest with herself of how many times she could say the term “regime-change wars” quickly and repeatedly.
Who won the debate?
Arguably, Bernie Sanders. It’s not every day you bounce back from a heart attack at 78 and then hit home runs for your supporters on almost every question in a debate.
Millions of Americans don’t have health insurance and hundreds of thousands go broke or die from medical conditions like cancer and Bernie is furious. Either that, or he’s making sure he gets that Presidential pay rise to sort out his $900,000 medical bill for a plaster and some crutches.
When he took a couple of minutes not being angry about the lack of health care, he blamed Joe Biden for voting in favour of the Iraq War. Because that’s one thing you get by not getting anything through the House: principles and a perfect voting record
To their credit, various other candidates also did a good show of being angry, adopting positions that would please their donors as well as being pro-healthcare.
Speaking of healthcare: Joe Biden managed to forget so much it wouldn’t have been a surprise if he’d turned around at the end and done a sponsored ad for Alzheimer’s medication. Too far? What was the joke again?
Newcomer anti-billionaire billionaire Tom Steyer explained his plan to fight economic inequality by taxing himself into having to live under an old bridge. He got cheers from the crowd which then drew straws for his $5,000 Armani blazer and $3,600 loafers.
Andrew Yang’s universal basic income of $1,000 a month was also put forward as another solution, angering several robots and automated cashiers in the crowd.
As for Elizabeth Warren, her opponents targeted her relentlessly, seemingly forgetting Joe Biden was onstage. Then again, so did he.
Who else did we forget: Julian Castro, Amy Klobuchar, Pete Buttigieg. Then again, so did everyone else it seems.
Buttigieg was done being Mr Nice Guy, demanding that Warren shut her “multi-trillion-dollar hole” and explain how she would pay for Medicare for All without massively raising taxes. Klobuchar agreed, praising Bernie for at least admitting taxes will go up to pay for healthcare.
Warren tried to smooth it over: “I don’t have a beef with billionaires”. Good, that way the billionaires can sleep easy knowing Warren’s good for some lefty-street-cred, but won’t make you use the Rolls Royce for carpooling.
Not raising taxes makes sense too. That way, the majority of the electorate can be for universal healthcare, but not so much that it actually happens.
What a master-debate it was.