CNN political commentator and former Obama adviser Van Jones said on Tuesday, Jan. 14, that the Democratic presidential debate was “dispiriting” and he saw nothing that would be able to defeat President Donald Trump.
“As a progressive to see those two [2020 Democratic presidential candidates Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)] have that level of vitriol was dispiriting,” Jones said, referencing the bitter feud between two top-tier contenders. “And I want to say that tonight for me was dispiriting. Democrats will have to do better than we saw tonight.”
“There was nothing I saw tonight to suggest we’ll be able to take Donald Trump out and I want to see a Democrat in the White House as soon as possible,” he added. “There was nothing tonight, if you’re looking at this thing, to say any of these people are prepared for what Donald Trump will do to us. And to see further divisions tonight is very dispiriting.”
.@ewarren had breakout moments tonight, but did anyone on that stage really seem ready to take on Trump in a debate? If we want a Democrat to win the White House (which I certainly do) we need our candidates to start showing up a lot stronger. #DemDebate @CNN pic.twitter.com/TO88Bn0ipv
— Van Jones (@VanJones68) January 15, 2020
Warren claimed this week that Sanders told her in a private meeting in 2018 that a woman could not win the presidency but Sanders denied the account.
“Bernie and I met for more than two hours in December 2018 to discuss the 2020 election, our past work together, and our shared goals: beating Donald Trump, taking back our government from the wealthy and well-connected, and building an economy that works for everyone. Among the topics that came up was what would happen if Democrats nominated a female candidate. I thought a woman could win; he disagreed,” Warren said in a statement.
The two candidates appeared to have a tense exchange onstage at the end of the Democratic debate.
At the end of the debate, Bernie Sanders reached out to shake hands with Elizabeth Warren and Warren just rejected it.
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) January 15, 2020
Early on, Sanders slammed former Vice President Joe Biden’s initial support for the Iraq war, calling it “the worst foreign policy blunder in the modern history of this country.”
Biden acknowledged his 2002 vote to authorize military action was “a mistake” but touted his role in carrying out the Obama administration’s foreign policy.
“It was a mistake and I acknowledged that, but the man who argued against the war, Barack Obama, picked me to be vice president … and turned to me and asked me to end the war,” Biden said. “It was a mistaken vote but my record on everything else we’ve done, I’ll compare it to anyone else on this stage.”
— jordan (@JordanUhl) January 15, 2020
“I had high expectations for the candidates during tonight’s #DemDebate, but there was a spark missing on stage. It felt like cold oatmeal to me. Do you agree?” Jones wrote in a tweet after the debate.