The first Democratic debates are here, with 2020 contenders converging in Miami over two nights — first on Wednesday, again on Thursday — in a crucial battleground state.
In the initial months of the campaign season, the presidential hopefuls have sought to break out from a sprawling field. These 20 Democrats are hoping to reach Democratic primary voters beyond visits to coffee shops and house parties in early-nominating states — and to reset the playing field.
The two-night event, airing at 9 p.m. EDT on NBC, MSNBC and Telemundo, continues Thursday with 10 different candidates.
After a wonky, relatively cordial opening night, with only a few moments of sparring between competitors, the Thursday debate will give the next slate of candidates their first opportunities to differentiate themselves and pitch a wide array of policy prescriptions on the major issues like climate change, gun control, health care, foreign policy, immigration and criminal justice reform.
The second 10 candidates are:
Former Vice President Joe Biden
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders
California Sen. Kamala Harris
South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg
Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet
New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper
California Rep. Eric Swalwell
Spiritual author Marianne Williamson
Entrepreneur Andrew Yang