Here are the winners and losers from the NBC/YouTube Democratic debate.
Winners and Losers:
1). Bernie Sanders – Sanders had his best debate yet as far as getting his message out in a clear way. Sanders is tapping into the anger and frustration of voters who still feel the pain of the Great Recession. Sanders and Clinton went toe to toe. It is easy to see why Sen. Sanders is running so strongly in the early states.
As his poll numbers have increased, Sanders is gaining momentum and confidence. He has gone from being a legitimate challenger for the Democratic nomination to being a potential winner of the Democratic nomination. Sanders still has a long road ahead, and he has to win early and often, but Bernie Sanders is looking strong less than two weeks before Iowa.
2).Hillary Clinton- Hillary Clinton is solid in these debates. Clinton just doesn’t make mistakes. The Sanders gains in the polls brought about a change in strategy for Clinton who was more pointed in her attacks on Sen. Sanders record. Hillary Clinton shined in the foreign policy section of the debate.
Clinton laid out what the role of her husband would be in a potential Hillary Clinton administration. Clinton said absolutely no to US ground troops to fight ISIS. Hillary Clinton had another strong debate, but if she was trying to put Bernie Sanders away, it didn’t work. It is easy to see why Clinton and Sanders are neck and neck in the early states. Clinton isn’t making mistakes, and turned in another steady and winning performance.
1). Martin O’Malley – O’Malley had a good debate, but as has been the case with his previous debate performances, it wasn’t good enough to rise to the level of Clinton and Sanders. O’Malley often had to elbow his way into the conversation. One gets the sense that in a different cycle, O’Malley would probably fare better, but he chose to run in the year of Sanders. Bernie Sanders has established himself as the alternative candidate to Hillary Clinton. The Democratic primary has been a two person race for months, and Martin O’Malley wasn’t able to change that dynamic tonight.
2). Democratic Viewers – The Democratic debate was buried after NFL playoff football on a Sunday night. Democratic voters are missing out on some great debates. The DNC did Democratic voters a great disservice with this schedule. Democrats deserve a bigger and better platform than what they have been stuck with in 2016.