Just when the Democratic debates were running out of new debate topics...there’s an impeachment inquiry to talk about.
Yes, the 10 from last month’s debate plus two others. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) – who didn’t qualify in September – is back to remind you she’s one of the few with military experience. Oh, and billionaire Tom Steyer is making his debate stage debut. Steyer made his money by launching a hedge fund and spent some of it (millions) on Democratic causes. His main issues are climate change and...wait for it...impeaching President Trump.
Correct. It’s the most people we’ve seen at once so far this year.
Then let’s catch you up: the Dems have been dropping the ‘impeachment’ idea for a while now. But last month, it came out that Trump urged Ukraine’s president to investigate a political opponent – former VP Joe Biden. This was over Biden’s 2016 push to fire a top Ukrainian prosecutor he and the EU saw as corrupt. The prosecutor had been looking into a company Biden’s son was on the board of. Cue Trump urging Ukraine’s president to investigate Biden about this...all while withholding close to $400 million in aid. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced the launch of an impeachment inquiry. More than 90% of House Dems say they’re on board with the inquiry.
The House is issuing subpoenas. Here’s what the full process looks like.
Biden, Biden, and how people react to Biden. As a Dem frontrunner, he’s been a major target in previous debates. On the one hand, the rest of the Dem candidates could be looking forward to him getting questioned on all this. On the other hand, Biden will probably say there’s nothing to the story. And no one on that stage wants to side with Trump over encouraging a foreign leader to investigate a political opponent. So it’ll be interesting to see who goes hard on Biden this time, and how much attacking they’re willing to do.
It’s not. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has started to lead in some polls. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has been recovering from a heart attack earlier this month. Meanwhile, candidates have been rolling out plans on everything from gun control to poverty alleviation. So they’ll want airtime for that. Meanwhile, the US and Japan have reached a trade deal. Trump has been shaking up foreign policy in Syria. Protests haven’t let up in Hong Kong. Health care and immigration dominated the last debates. So it’s not like impeachment is the only topic out there.
The whole moderate-versus-progressive thing has been a big play. There’s a tug-of-war between those promising free things (college, health care) and those who are saying 'how do you plan on paying for that?' If you want all the recaps, we covered them here, here, here, here, and *catches breath* here.
The stakes for this debate are especially high for Biden, given the growing momentum for Warren and mounting attacks from Trump. “SNL” did a piece on what an impeachment town hall might look like. Now it’s time to see how closely life imitates art.
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