The October Democratic Debate was held on Tuesday, October 15th in Westerville, Ohio. In the fourth Democratic debate leading up to the 2020 presidential election, twelve hopeful candidates took the stage and debated topics ranging from impeachment to income inequality.  

In order to have attained a position in the fourth debate, candidates were required to hit certain markers involving polling percentages and money raised. Once they reached these markers, they were qualified to enter the debate. Candidates Tulsi Gabbard and Tom Steyer reached the requirements days before the debate. Once onstage, the candidates’ podium placement was based on averages from ten recent pollings.

The twelve candidates responded to various questions asked by moderators, with the main topics being income inequality, healthcare and the beginning of the impeachment process regarding United States President Donald Trump’s abuse of presidential power. 

“We heard it tonight, a yes-or-no question that didn’t get a yes-or-no answer.” — Candidate Pete Buttigieg

The candidates received a wide range of airtime with Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren receiving the most with nearly 23 minutes and Tom Steyer having the least with a little over seven minutes. 

Throughout the duration of the debate many candidates attacked Elizabeth Warren on a wide variety of topics regarding her stances and opinions. Many believe her rebuttals against these attacks proved her abilities and considered her the winner. 

Despite this, one of these instances was Candidate Pete Buttigieg criticizing Warren’s plan for the removal of private healthcare. “We heard it tonight, a yes-or-no question that didn’t get a yes-or-no answer. Look, this is why people here in the Midwest are so frustrated with Washington in general and Capitol Hill in particular. Your signature, Senator, is to have a plan for everything — except this. No plan has been laid out to explain how a multi-trillion-dollar hole in this Medicare-for-All plan that Senator Warren is putting forward is supposed to get filled in,” said Buttigieg.

Officials and experts have discussed this debate, and many are stating that little ground was covered in understanding the candidates’ plans and policies as the sheer number of candidates is proving to be difficult.

The next Democratic debate will be held on November 20th 2019, and five candidates have qualified thus far. In order to qualify for the fifth debate candidates must attain 3% in four DNC-approved polls.