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How to Watch the First 2020 Democratic Primary Debate


How to Watch the First 2020 Democratic Primary Debate

Summer is here, and so is the first Democratic debate of the 2020 election season.

Stop me if you've heard this before, but the Democrats have fielded a historically large group of candidates this election cycle. To accommodate them all—or at least the top 20—in a semi-reasonable fashion, the Democratic National Committee and its broadcast partner NBC are holding this week's Miami debate over back-to-back nights, each featuring a different lineup of 10 candidates. The first debate starts at 9 pm ET on Wednesday, June 26, and then America runs it back with the second slate, again at 9 pm ET, on Thursday, June 27. Each night's debate is scheduled to last two hours.

Expect a lot of bite-sized answers about the most pressing issues facing the country during that time! According to NBC, candidates will have 60 seconds to respond to questions, and 30 seconds for follow-ups; everyone also gets a closing remark. Moderating on both nights will be NBC's Lester Holt, Savannah Guthrie, Chuck Todd, Rachel Maddow, and José Díaz-Balart.

Who's Debating Whom When?

Twenty candidates met the DNC's qualifying criteria for the first debate, a combination of polling and grassroots fundraising metrics. Each night's lineup was decided earlier this month through a random drawing. Both events will take place at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Miami.

Wednesday night's debate will feature:

Cory Booker, senator from New Jersey

Julian Castro, former secretary of Housing and Urban Development

Bill de Blasio, mayor of New York City

John Delaney, former representative from Maryland

Tulsi Gabbard, representative from Hawaii

Jay Inslee, governor of Washington

Amy Klobuchar, senator from Minnesota

Beto O'Rourke, former representative from Texas

Tim Ryan, representative from Ohio

Elizabeth Warren, senator from Massachusetts

Thursday night's debate will feature:

Michael Bennet, senator from Colorado

Joe Biden, former vice-president

Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana

Kirsten Gillibrand, senator from New York

Kamala Harris, senator from California

John Hickenlooper, former governor of Colorado

Bernie Sanders, senator from Vermont

Eric Swalwell, representative from California

Marianne Williamson, activist

Andrew Yang, tech entrepreneur

That's a lot of names!