Speak Out: Democratic debate

The three leading Democratic presidential candidates clashed over health care, immigration and President Barack Obama’s legacy on Thursday in a fierce debate that pitted an aggressive Joe Biden against liberal rivals Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.

“This is America,” said Biden, his party’s early front-runner, before calling Sanders “a socialist.” He later declared, “I stand with Barack Obama all eight years, good bad and indifferent.”

The top White House hopefuls faced off for the first time alongside seven other candidates who are under increasing pressure to break out of the pack. All assailed Trump without mercy.

• I’ve never seen a weaker Democratic party than today’s. — Willy Beal

• Biden’s been in public service for 40 years. He should have a long laundry list of major accomplishments. He was my senator for years. I can’t name any. — Rick N Roberta Smith

• Awful display of free stuff from socialists with no real solutions. — Philip L Puschel

• There were actual plans laid out with exact dollar figures but OK. — Danielle Levredge

• I only saw one flag pin. None on stage. What is in the water these Dems are drinking? They sure don’t have my views. — Jack Jordan

• Agreed. I’d rather be represented by any of the 10 on stage last night than what we have today. — Kathy Spring Jordan

• They dont like America. That’s why.they want socialism. — Christopher Dunion

• The saddest part to me is that these candidates sling accusations without any sustenance back and forth all day long and the expectation is that no one will challenge them. At least half the voters will believe them without hesitation, with no attempt to validate the statements for truthfulness. — Dave Fisher

• They already tried to fix health care, Obamacare was done by a Democrat. they are the reason health care is so high in the first place. So how are they going to fix it? — Debra Meinhardt Petro

• The cost of health care has always been high. Under Obamacare, children could be covered until they were 26. No one could be thrown off because of pre-existing conditions and millions more were covered. We’ve been hearing Republicans talk repeal and replace for years now with nothing to show for it. Republicans owned the Senate and the House and the presidency for two years and did you get better health care? You got a tax break for millionaires and corporations that have exploded the deficit. — William Mazzariello

• Watching this debate, it occurred to me there are two distinct factions in the National Democrat Party:

1) the left wing, which aims for the maximum amount of economic slavery and minimum economic freedom it can foist on the American people at a given time and the potential tax revenue available;

2) the far-left wing, which doesn’t bother to constrain itself to the above realities. — Matt Bucher

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