Just the Facts

Five Takeaways from Debate 2 Night 2

By No Labels
August 1, 2019 | Blog

Last night concluded the second round of the second debates. Find our 5 biggest takeaways here!


Sen. Kamala Harris of New York found herself on the defensive throughout the debate broadcast nationally from Detroit. Rival candidates for the Democratic nomination for president attacked Harris’ recently released health care plan. Former Vice President Joe Biden said the plan was too expensive, while Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet said the plan would raise taxes for the middle class. In one fierce exchange, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawai attacked Harris’ record as a prosecutor. “Too many examples to cite, but she put over 1,500 people in jail for marijuana violations,”  Gabbard said.


The question of impeaching President Trump was raised during the debate. Former San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro said Democrats in Congress should pursue impeachment. The two front runners of the debate, Harris and Biden, did not comment on impeachment. 

The policies of President Barack Obama were debated among the candidates. Some candidates, like New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, criticized the high number of migrants deported during Obama’s presidency. Biden defended Obama’s legacy, saying the former president “fundamentally changed” the immigration system. The former vice president’s staunch defense of Obama was criticized by New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, who said “Mr. Vice President, you can’t have it both ways. You invoke President Obama more than anybody in this campaign. You can’t do it when it’s convenient and then dodge it when it’s not.”  


Climate change also came up during the night. Some candidates, like Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, said climate change was the most pressing issue facing the United States and that there is no time for “middle-ground solutions.” Biden also offered his solution for climate change, saying under his administration there would be no subsidies for “any fossil fuel.” 

Criminal Justice reform also became a major topic during the debate. Most notably, Sen. Booker attacked Biden’s role in the 1994 Crime Bill, which he said led to higher incarceration rates, especially for African-Americans and other marginalized communities. “Since the 1970s … every crime bill, major and minor, has had his name on it,” Booker said in an exchange with the vice president.  

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