What They’re Saying: Delaney Breaks Out in Second Debate

Washington Post, CNN and Vox List Delaney as a Winner in Tuesday Debate

DETROIT, MI – During Tuesday night’s debate, Delaney drew a clear contrast between his solutions on health care, climate change, and trade with the ideological proposals of other candidates on stage, leading to several break out moments.Journalists and political commentators took notice, and analysts at the Washington Post, CNN and Vox all had Delaney as one of the winners Tuesday night. Below are key takeaways from top media outlets highlighting Delaney’s performance.

What they’re saying: 

Warren and Delaney had a good night. CNN Had a Terrible One. Washington Post

Delaney clearly had the best moments of the campaign by going toe-to-toe with advocates of Medicare-for-all. With an assist from several other contenders, he made a compelling case that you can have universal coverage and preserve choice for Americans. He added that “we don’t have to go around and be the party of subtraction, and telling half the country, who has private health insurance, that their health insurance is illegal.” He also had a strong moment defending President Barack Obama’s Trans-Pacific Partnership and skewering Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) just-released trade plan.”

Winners and losers from the first night of the CNN debate, CNN

“Before this debate, no one knew who Delaney was or what he believed. If you watched this debate, both of those questions were answered. That doesn’t mean you necessarily loved Delaney, as he quite clearly embraced a moderate view on almost everything. But Delaney’s repeated clashes with Sanders and Warren were a win for the former Maryland congressman…”

3 winners and 4 losers from the first night of the July Democratic debates, Vox

“[Delaney] did not actually dominate the debate in terms of time spent talking, but it sure felt that way as the CNN moderators, especially Jake Tapper, kept turning to Delaney to explicitly make the case against Sanders’s and Warren’s ambitious plans to remake the way America provides health care, energy, education, and much more.

…But night one was, overall, more centrist-heavy, and Delaney’s ability to dominate that corner of the debate and take the argument to Warren and Sanders was notable.”

It took two years, but John Delaney finally got his debate moment, Newsweek

“[Delaney] was bestowed, and sometimes grabbed, a completely unproportionate amount of speaking time—a whopping nine minutes towards the end of the debate, right behind the top three contenders. Throughout the night, he was used as a foil to top-tier candidates like Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, calling progressive policy prescriptions ‘dead on arrival.’

It was a do-or-die moment for Delaney, with only 10 candidates set to take the stage for the third debate in September. He needed to prevail or perish, and it appears that he prevailed.”

Who Won the Debate? Politico

“Delaney had exactly what he wanted. Throughout the campaign, the low-polling former Maryland congressional has been itching for a fight with Sanders and Warren. And there was his name in the second sentence of Jake Tapper’s first question, posed to Sanders about the Vermont senator’s “Medicare for All” proposal.”

John Delaney battles with progressive front-runners in Democratic debate, CNBC

“…former Maryland Rep. John Delaney was the surprising tone-setter during the first night of the second Democratic debates on Tuesday. He picked fights with progressive Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and emerged as the leading moderate voice on the stage in the absence of front-runner Joe Biden.”

Struggle for the soul of the Democratic party, CNN

“Thanks largely to the arrival of Montana Governor Steve Bullock on stage and a better performance by Maryland Congressman John Delaney, the moderates’ push for less revolutionary, more realistic policy changes sent a message to the broader public that the party hasn’t lost its way but is having a healthy debate about what that way that should be.”  – David Gergen a White House adviser to four presidents and is a senior political analyst at CNN.

Commentators: Who won the Democratic debate?, CNN

“…former Maryland Congressman John Delaney did a good job of challenging the more, umm, fanciful proposals from Warren and Sanders”  – Paul Begala, a Democratic strategist and CNN political commentator, was a political consultant for Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign”