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Booker and Klobuchar Have Strong Performances at 5th Dem. Debate

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    Ten Democratic Presidential candidates took to the stage in Atlanta, Georgia for the fifth debate of the cycle and two candidates who aren't at the front of the pack stood out the most to me. Senators Cory Booker and Amy Klobuchar both had strong performances, likely granting them both a lifeline for the next debate in December.

    Senator Klobuchar had a number of big moments in the debate, especially for shining a light on the double standard female candidates must endure, singling out Mayor Pete Buttigieg for his lack of qualifications compared to some of the women on the same stage. She also won the "best one-liner of the night award" when she said "if you think a woman can't beat Donald Trump, Nancy Pelosi does it every day."

    Senator Booker also had a big night. After a relatively quiet start, Booker broke through when he directly challenged Vice President Biden over the issue of marijuana legalization and how the War on Drugs has devastated the black community. Booker stressed how disastrous marijuana prohibition has been on black and brown people in this country, inferring that Biden's reluctance to legalize the substance is perpetuating the racist policies of past (and present). His criticism of Biden led the former VP into a fumbling response in which he said “the only African American woman who’s been elected to the Senate” supports him, causing Senator Kamala Harris to quip “No, the other one is here.” (Biden was speaking of former Illinois Senator Carol Moseley Braun.)

    Overall, the fifth debate likely won't mix up the "top-tier" standings because none of the major candidates had a catastrophic flub. We may start to think about adding Pete Buttegieg to the top-tier, but I still personally have a hard time doing so just yet because I can't help but think he's just another "flavor of the month" in the same way Beto O'Rourke was. We'll see if he has true staying power if he performs well in primaries that don't have, to put it bluntly, monolithic populations.

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    Agree on Booker. Biden needed to be called out on his marijuana stance and Booker was the perfect candidate to do so, for all the reasons he brought up.

    Klobuchar did have some nice moments and its a little disappointing she doesn't get taken as a serious candidate for the most part. Hard to imagine her winning any primaries even though I think she is a pretty strong candidate in a lot of ways.

    And for Mayor Pete, agree he seriously lacks support outside of predominately white primary voting states. But it is still very early in the bigger picture. If he wins Iowa and New Hampshire, all eyes will be on him for Nevada and especially South Carolina, but we won't really know until all that kicks off in Feb.

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    bryce28 Wrote:

    And for Mayor Pete, agree he seriously lacks support outside of predominately white primary voting states. But it is still very early in the bigger picture. If he wins Iowa and New Hampshire, all eyes will be on him for Nevada and especially South Carolina, but we won't really know until all that kicks off in Feb.

    I think he has a serious shot to take Iowa. In Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll he rose 16% in support, bringing him to 25%. With Warren, Biden and Sanders tying for second at 15%. I can see getting decent traction in New Hampsire as well. I have my doubts about South Carolina and Nevada. Plus, Nevada is definitely Kamala Harris' territory given the fact that many Southern Californians have moved there due to it having a cheaper housing market.