15:48 GMT +323 October 2019
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    FILE PHOTO: Former Vice President Joe Biden speaks as South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Senator Bernie Sanders, Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Kamala Harris listen during the 2020 Democratic U.S. presidential debate in Houston, Texas, U.S., September 12, 2019

    The Very Best of Dem Debate Night: Mix-Ups, Barbs and Gaffes That Make Trump Pale in Comparison

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    The three-hour primary debate that dominated US prime-time on Thursday was the longest of the year, but a few major topics (like abortions e.g.) went uncovered. The freed space was apparently given to loads of clownish barbs instead, and against this backdrop, Trump and his circle, albeit eviscerated by the Dems, seem to be a picture of composure.

    “Bernie Wrote It, and I Read it”, Klobuchar Lauds Herself

    The first several minutes were freed up for the candidates to clash over semantic differences in their healthcare policy proposals. The top polling candidates J. Biden, B. Sanders, who incidentally debuted an extremely hoarse voice with many chuckling it’s all due to decades spent at rallies, and E. Warren sparred over Sanders’ Medicare for All bill, with Sen. Amy Klobuchar no less passionately weighing in. Pivoting off the Vermont Senator’s statement that he “wrote the damn bill”, she chimed in that “while Bernie wrote the bill, I read the bill”, arguing that millions of Americans wouldn’t be able to cover their current insurance under his plan.

    Andrew Yang Has Something in Store

    The fiery exchange about “Medicare for All” also saw Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang joking about his Asian descent. “Now, I am Asian, so I know a lot of doctors”, Yang said. He noted, as president, he would try to keep a check on rising costs that doctors warn him against….

    while sending “basic universal incomes” up. He brought up his campaign pledge with fanfare in another exchange.

    “It’s time to trust ourselves more than politicians”, Yang said. “My campaign will now give a freedom dividend of $1,000 a month for an entire year to ten American families, someone watching this at home right now”, the candidate dropped inviting Americans to sign up for the lottery on his website.

    “President” Sanders?

    While one tried on the role of a lottery dealer, another, Joe Biden seemed to perpetually confuse time and space…and titles. “The president, or my friend from Vermont —” 76-year-old  Biden said, gesturing in Sanders’ direction as he and the Vermont senator pondered on the costs of Sanders’s “Medicare for All” proposal. The former vice president didn’t stop at that on Thursday however, further proving to debate viewers that he has a penchant for slips of the tongue.

    Speaking about deportations under ex-President Barack Obama, he explained:

    “What Latinos should look at, comparing this president to the president we have is outrageous, number one. We didn’t lock people up in cages”, Biden said before defending Obama’s stance. When asked if he has any regrets, he retorted:

    “I’m the vice president of the United States”, Biden thundered as though having misheard the question.

    The blunder seems, though, to have gone almost unnoticed by viewers apparently remembering something more outstanding in the former vice president’s performance:

    “He performed a little better than expected.  He didn't slur his words, he didn't tangle himself up in run-on sentences,” explained Daniel Lazare, a journalist and author of a number of books on American politics.

    Kamala Harris’ “Wizard of Oz” Debacle

    Sen. Kamala Harris demonstrated good knowledge of classic literature and cinematography as she brought up the elusive wizard of The Wizard of Oz during the debate with fellow Dems in a bid to take a dig at President Trump. She spoke at length at how the US should hold China “accountable” while at the same time collaborating with the second biggest economy.

    “We also need to partner with China on the issue of North Korea”, she said. “But the bottom line is this: Donald Trump, in office on trade policy, you know he reminds me of that guy in the Wizard of Oz, you know, when you pull back the curtain … it’s a really small dude?”

    It would have gone smoothly, but for moderator George Stephanopoulos, who is reportedly only 5’5 tall, standing nearby.  “I’m not even gonna take the bait, Senator Harris”, he chuckled.

    Climate “Warming” in Ice Age – Intriguing, eh?

    And who can possibly get past the laughable moment when Klobuchar, discussing climate change, inserted a The Day After Tomorrow reference, saying: "You know that movie, The Day After Tomorrow? It's today. We have seen a warming in our world like never before”.

    Curtain down. Both because it was way too rehearsed and also because it's an Ice Age, not extreme warming, that envelopes the planet in the sci-fi movie.

    “House Divided” for Long?

    Meanwhile, Pete Buttigieg and Julian Castro ended up in a spat…over on-stage and on-air spats.

    As Castro and Joe Biden argued about the former president’s legacy, Buttigieg put in his two cents, denouncing in-party confrontation.

    "This is why presidential debates are becoming unwatchable”, Buttigieg said. "This reminds everybody of what they cannot stand about Washington — scoring points against each other, poking at each other and telling each other that you're, my plan..."

    Castro opted to interrupt the barb about the political circus, charging:

    "That's called the Democratic primary election”, Castro said. "That's called an election”, he reiterated, with Amy Klobuchar hitting back with a metaphor in response: “but a house divided cannot stand”.

    Shall one take it as an in-depth forecast for next year’s vote?

    “The whole debate system is ridiculous, it shows that the US is not a democracy and those who talk good and has the most pleasing presentation is somehow seen as the winner,”  Michael Springmann, attorney, author and former diplomat from Washington DC commented on last night’s debate, going on:

    “And that doesn’t translate into the ability to govern, the ability to build foreign and domestic policy or have any concept of what to do about foreign and domestic policy; they want to surrender everything to special entries groups, to big pharmaceuticals for medical care for example, to special interest groups for firearms.”

    He branded the exchanges “a very nasty mess,” assuming that if they keep on “in this manner, they may well re-elect Donald Trump.”

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    TV, primary, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Republicans, Democrats, candidates
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