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Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders in Charleston, South Carolina, on Tuesday. Win McNamee/Getty Images.

Recap: The South Carolina Democratic Debate

Tuesday's debate was a heated one

Out of the many Democratic candidates for president, only seven are left, and those seven took the stage Tuesday night for the last major debate before this week’s South Carolina caucuses and next week’s Super Tuesday races– where thirty percent of the delegates available will be up for grabs across fourteen different states and American Samoa.

Fresh off his momentum from the Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada primaries, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) took most of the heat, dealing with political attacks from all of his fellow candidates. 

“Do you want to have someone in charge of this ticket who wants to put forward 60 trillion dollars in spending? Three times the American economy. I don’t think we do,” said Sen. Amy Klobachar. “I think we can get all those bold, progressive things done without having someone that’s so alienating that we’re going to turn off the voters that we need to bring with us.”

This theme of politically attacking Sen. Sanders stuck for most of the night, not only going after his rather expensive proposed policies, but his status as a democratic socialist and his possible support via Russian meddling in the election. 

Sen. Sanders’ previous comments on Fidel Castro, the former dictator of Cuba, also drew fire from former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg.

“We’re not going to win these critical House and Senate races if people in those races have to explain why the nominee of the Democratic party is telling people to look at the bright side of the Castro regime,” he said.

Former mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg, also received harsh criticism for his record of sexual harassment, his former policies as mayor, and his wealth. Former Vice President Joe Biden also emerged more forceful than ever before, reinforcing the pressure of the impending primaries and general election.

With Super Tuesday and the Democratic National Convention fast approaching, the candidates were pressed to make the most out of their time on the debate stage, often resorting to shouting over one another, interrupting each other, and borderline insulting their fellow candidates at times. 

Sen. Amy Klobachar warned the candidates that if they didn’t put aside their differences and work to have the party win all contests in November, there will be tough consequences.

“If we spend the next four months tearing our party apart, we’re going to watch Donald Trump spend the next four years tearing our country apart,” she said.


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