Key Quotes from the Democratic Debates
What do you think of the 2020 Democratic contenders?
by Future Majority | 8.1.19
by Future Majority |
by Future Majority |
Over the last two nights, 2020 contenders for the 2020 Democratic presidential ticket took the stage in Detroit hoping their policies and pull-quotes landed with the electorate. Here are some of the top quotes from both nights of debate, originally published by Countable. What do you think of the 2020 Democratic contenders?
Debate Night #1
Marianne Williamson, Spiritual guru
60 miles away from the debate stage is Flint, Michigan, whose water crisis has yet to be resolved. Williamson's response was one of the top-trending quotes of the evening:
"Flint is just the tip of the iceberg...if you think any of this wonkiness is going to deal with this dark psychic force of the collectivized hatred that this president is bringing up in this country, then I'm afraid that the Democrats are going to see some very dark days.
"We need to say it like it is, it's bigger than Flint. It's all over this country. It's particularly people of color. It's particularly people who do not have the money to fight back, and if the Democrats don't start saying it, why would those people feel they're there for us, and if those people don't feel it, they won't vote for us and Donald Trump will win."
Tim Ryan, Congressman from Ohio
"If you want to come into the country, you should at least ring the doorbell."
Amy Klobuchar, Senator from Minnesota
“I believe that immigrants don’t diminish America. They are America.”
"If you want to do something about border security, you first of all change the rules so people can seek asylum. Then, you pass the bill and what the bill will do is it’ll rightly reduce the deficit and give us some money for border security and for border help processing the cases and most of all it will allow for a path to citizenship, because this is not just about the border. Donald Trump wants to use these people as political pawns when we have people all over our country that want to work and obey the law."
Pete Buttigieg, Mayor of South Bend, Indiana
On the ideological divide among Democrats regarding healthcare:
“It’s time to stop worrying about what the Republicans will say. If it’s true that if we embrace a far left agenda, they’re going to say we’re a bunch of crazy socialists. If we embrace a conservative agenda, you know what they’re going to do? They’re going to say we’re a bunch of crazy socialists. So let’s just stand up for the right policy and go up there and defend it.”
Bernie Sanders, Senator from Vermont
Rep. Ryan said Sanders didn't know if his Medicare for All plan would provide better, more-comprehensive coverage.
“I do know. I wrote the damn bill.”
Elizabeth Warren, Senator from Massachusetts
Former Maryland congressman John Delaney used his opening statement to say that Sanders' push for Medicare for All would re-elect Trump. Sanders responded "You're wrong!" to cheers. After more back and forth, Warren came to the aid of Sanders, saying:
“We are the Democrats. We should stop using Republican talking points.”
Beto O'Rourke, former congressman from Texas
“The very foundation of this country, the wealth that we have built, was literally on the backs of those who were kidnapped and brought here by force.”
John Hickenlooper, Former Colorado Governor
“I agree that we need to secure borders. There is no question about that. The frustration with what's going on in Washington is they are kicking the ball back and forth. Secure the borders and make sure whatever law we have doesn't allow children to be snatched from parents and put in cages.”
John Delaney, Former congressman from Maryland
"Most of the people running for president want to build economic walls to free trade and beat up on President Obama. I'm the only one running that actually supports the Trans-Pacific Partnership."
Steve Bullock, Governor of Montana
"I’m a gun owner, I hunt. Like far too many people in America, I have been personally impacted by gun violence. Had an 11-year-old nephew, Jeremy, shot and killed on a playground. We need to start looking at this as a public health issue, not a political issue. I agree with Senator Klobuchar. It is the N.R.A.”
Debate Night #2
Michael Bennet, Senator from Colorado
"I think this is one in the end that we agree with. There's not a single person on this stage if were president would ever separate a child from their parents at the border. And that is what this administration has done in the American people's name, they have turned our border into a symbol of hostility, the symbol of this country before Donald Trump was president was the Statue of Liberty. That should be the symbol of the United States of America, not Donald Trump's terrible war."
Kirsten Gillibrand, Senator from New York
“I can talk to those white women in the suburbs that voted for Trump and explain to them what white privilege is. When their son is walking down the street with a bag of M&Ms wearing a hoodie, his whiteness protects him from not being shot."
Julian Castro, Former housing secretary
"I don't want to make America anything again. I don't want us to go backward. We're not going back to the past. We're not going back where we came from. We're going to move forward."
Cory Booker, Senator from New Jersey
Booker to Biden on crime bills:
“If you want to compare records and, frankly, I’m shocked that you do... There’s a saying in my community, you’re dipping into the Kool-Aid and you don’t even know the flavor. You need to come to the city of Newark and see the reforms we put in place."
(Booker was the former mayor of Newark, New Jersey)
Bonus soliloquy on African American voter suppression:
“Everybody from Republicans to Russians were targeting the suppression of African-American voters. We need to say that. The truth will set us free. We need campaign that is ready for what’s coming: An all-out assault. Especially on the most valuable — in fact the highest performing voter group in our coalition, which is black women. And I will be a person who tries to fight against voter suppression and tries to activate and engage voters and coalitions that will win Michigan and Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.”
Joe Biden, Former vice president
On Trump separating migrant children from their parents at the border:
"The fact of the matter is, when people cross the border illegally, it is illegal to do it unless they're seeking asylum. People should have to get in line. That's the problem. And the only reason this particular part of the law is being abused is because of Donald Trump. We should defeat Donald Trump and end this practice."
Kamala Harris, Senator from California
Harris once again confronted Biden on the subject of school busing and the former VP's praise of Southern segregationists as civil partners in the Senate.
“Had those segregationists their way, I would not be a member of the United States senate, Cory Booker would not be a member of the United States Senate and Barack Obama would not have been in a position to nominate him to the place he holds.”
Andrew Yang, Entrepreneur
Yang raised the case of his wife, who provides at-home care for their autistic son.
“What does her work count at in today’s economy? Zero, and we know that’s the opposite of the truth. We know that her work is among the most challenging and vital."
In order to win, Yang said,
“We redefine economic progress to include all the things that matter to the people in Michigan and all of us, like our own health, our well being, our mental health, our clean air and clean water, how our kids are doing — if we change the measurements of the 21st century economy to revolve around our own well-being, then we will win this election.”
Tulsi Gabbard, Congresswoman from Hawaii
“First of all, [climate change] is personal. You can imagine I grew up in Hawaii, which is the most remote island chain in the world, so for us growing up there, protecting our environment was not a political issue, it’s a way of life. It’s part of our culture. It’s part of who we are.”
Jay Inslee, Governor of Washington
“We cannot work this out. The time is up. Our house is on fire. We have to stop using coal in ten years and we need a president to do it or it won't get done. Get off coal. Save this country and the planet."
Bill de Blasio, Mayor of New York City
"If we're going to beat Donald Trump, this has to be a party that stands for something. The party of labor unions. This has to be the party of universal health care. This has to be the party that's not afraid to say out loud we're going to tax the hell out of the wealthy. And when we do that, Donald Trump right on cue will call us socialists. Here's what I'll say to him: 'Donald, you're the real socialist.'"
(Illustration by Lily Chen)
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