The debate among Democratic candidates for the US presidency this Tuesday revealed the rift between the call to introduce revolutionary measures and a desperate desire to defeat President Donald Trump.
Placed side by side in the center of the stage, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren responded to their most cautious rivals, who ridiculed the “Medicare for all“ plan and warned that the “à la carte economy” would jeopardize their chances of winning the White House by 2020.
“I do not understand why subjects someone to all the complications of competing for the presidency of the united States just to talk about what we can do and what we shouldn’t be fighting,” said Warren, senator from Massachusetts, criticizing the “lack of guts” of the democrats.
Sanders, Senator for Vermont, agreed:”I’m a little sick of Democrats who are afraid of big ideas.”
Six months before a candidate is elected, the tug of war over the future of the party faces pragmatism against ideological purity. In front of Democratic voters there is a long list of candidates divided by age, race, sex and ideology. The pulse with the political left was the dominant theme of the first night in the second round of Democratic debates, notable both for its tension and for the issues dealt with.
The organizers scheduled two nights of debates, on Tuesday and Wednesday, each with half of the twenty candidates. The second session will feature the initial favorite, former Vice President Joe Biden, and California Senator Kamala Harris.
Although much of the debate was dominated by the attacks on Health Policy defended by the most progressive aspirants, in the second hour the issue of race came up. The candidates, all white, left the divisions aside by condemning Trump for turning race into a pillar of his reelection campaign. Sanders called Trump a racist, while others said the president’s rhetoric rekindles memories of the worst moments in the country’s history, including slavery.
“The legacy of slavery and segregation and Jim Crow and the suppression is still alive and well in all aspects of the economy and the country today,” said the exrepresentante of Texas, Beto O’rourke, who expressed his support to create a committee to study compensation for descendants of slaves.
The former vice-president will try to show that his disappointing speech in last month’s debate was an anomaly.
The 76-year-old Democrat is expected to face new questions about his past policies and statements about women and minorities, two key groups to get the Democratic candidacy and ultimately defeat Trump.
For his part, Trump said Tuesday that he would follow the debate from the White House, although his Twitter account kept an unusual silence during the show.