DETROIT (FOX 2) - The second and final night of the Democratic debates has arrived and 10 candidates will take the Fox Theatre stage Wednesday evening.
Night two of the debate lasted over two-and-a-half hours as the candidates battled it out over the economy, healthcare, utilizing the military, student debt, and much more. At the end of the night, the candidates will stream out of the Fox Theatre and answer questions in the spin room. We'll stream it live right here when they're available.
Presented by CNN, the debate is a two-night event at the Fox Theatre July 30-31 beginning at 8 p.m. This page is a running ticker of updates throughout Tuesday's debate, so keep checking back. You can watch the debate on CNN or by clicking here.
Wednesday's candidates are: Former Vice President Joe Biden, California Sen. Kamala Harris, Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and businessman Andrew Yang.
Tuesday's candidates were: Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke, Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, author Marianne Williamson, former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan.
Night one of the debate lasted almost two-and-a-half hours as the candidates battled it out over the economy, healthcare, utilizing the military, student debt, and much more.
The most recent update is at the top of this page.
CLOSING STATEMENTS.— FOX 2 Detroit (@FOX2News) August 1, 2019
de Blasio: "If we're going to beat Donald Trump, this has to be a party that stands for something," including labor unions, universal healthcare. Have to be the party unafraid to say: "We're going to tax the hell out of the wealthy."
On the Mueller report, Harris says there are 10 clear incidents of obstruction of justice by Trump and he should be held accountable. Booker agreed and, calling for impeachment, said Trump is "acting as an authoritarian against the actual constitution." de Blasio says the best impeachment is beating him in the 2020 election.
Bennet warned that any attempt to impeach Trump would be met with stonewalling by McConnel in the Senate. "I believe we have a moral obligation to beat Donald Trump. He has to be single-term president, and we can't do anything that plays into his hands."
Booker refused to set a date on when he would bring soldiers in Afghanistan home, preferring to say he would reduce the number of soldiers in the country as quickly and as safely as possible, as to avoid creating a vacuum in the country.
Gabbard echoed a similar sentiment, citing her experience in Iraq and said this week two more soldiers were killed in the Middle East. She said she wants to bring the country's troops home. Yang built upon that theme and said he would reallocate funds from the military to communities instead.
Candidates reflected on their support or lack thereof for the Iraq war. Inslee said he was one of two individuals on the stage to offer an official opinion on the war, declining his support. The jab going at Biden, who did initially support the war. Biden retorted that he supported the reason the president at the time offered for why. But from the moment of shock-and-awe, he disagreed with the war. Gabbard said "we were all lied to" referring to the Iraq War.
Mass of press patiently waiting for candidates post debate. Last night @rooprajfox2 and I were 9/10 let's see what we can do tonight! Looking for the headliners Biden, Harris and Booker @FOX2News pic.twitter.com/1CnTSmTLCg— Jessica Dupnack (@JDupnackFOX2) August 1, 2019
There was less confrontation over the economy from candidates. Castro, who was the first to speak rebuked how Trump takes credit for the 108 months of economic growth, saying 80 percent of that is due to Obama. Gabbard said she would endorse free trade over tariffs and trade deals and would not keep the tariffs put in place by Trump on China because of the "devastating effect" they have had on American workers.
Biden said he would renegotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership instead of joining it again and would make sure environmentalists and labor leaders were at the table to make sure the country holds China accountable.
Joe Biden on if he would rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal: "I would not rejoin the TPP as it was initially put forward. I would insist that we renegotiate pieces of that" #DemDebate pic.twitter.com/0h9w8H75XA— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) August 1, 2019
Trump pulled out of the Obama-era deal two years ago. de Blasio is noting that then-Sen. Biden supported the original NAFTA trade deal, and challenged Biden on a new Trump proposal he termed "NAFTA 2.0." That led to a back-and-forth with Biden, whom de Blasio has previously called out of touch.
"We believe in redemption in this party," de Blasio said.
Biden replied, "Well, I hope you're part of it."
Yang, for the second time of the night, cites his plan to give $1,000 to everyone every month as a means to an end of reducing the gender pay gap.
Meanwhile, Harris would mandate companies to say on their website if they pay their employees equally and would fine the companies that don't value that. Gillibrand deflected and said "we need to have a broader conversation about women" in the workforce before jabbing at Biden for an op-ed he wrote about the "deterioration of the family" when women go into the workforce. Biden said in the past Gillibrand has supported him on these topics and wondered allowed why she felt differently, noting the only difference was she was now running for president.
After hearing from moderators that Biden is favored to beat Trump, Yang said he's building a "coalition of disinfected trump supporters, libertarians and conservatives" that would carry him to victory.
Gabbard brought the conversation back to Flint. She said part of the reason places like Flint are still suffering is that $4 billion of the U.S.'s money is spent on continuing war in Afghanistan, rather than using those precious resources back home.
Candidates were asked how to win Michigan. Biden said he was asked to help Detroit get out of bankruptcy, and spent the better part of two years making sure it did just that. Biden cites Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's endorsement when he explained the investment he has made into the city and state as a reason for why he can win Michigan in 2020, after it went red in 2016.
"We invested significantly in this city and transportation -- anyway the point is, we have made significant investments in this city and I expect that's why the mayor endorsed me and didn't endorse the senator."
Gillibrand: "To the people of Michigan I know exactly how I would beat President Trump, I've already done it. I took a bus tour to talk about his broken promises here in Michigan. He promised no bad trade deals and not only did he have not have bad trade deals, he started a trade war with China, and he just signed onto another bad trade agreement with NAFTA 2.0 a give-away to drug companies in Mexico. I took the bus to Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania, telling people that he has broken his promises to them. I can bring people together in red, blue and purple states."
The Flint water crisis is finally brought up.
Citing his own experience, de Blasio says they have dropped lead levels by 90 percent since 2005. "I'm in charge of the largest city in the nation, you do not accept the status quo -- you fix it." He said "there should be a federal mandate" to keep lead out of homes.
Castro also touts his record, saying he went to Flint and helped residents get water filters, then improved the standard of how you deal with elevated blood levels in children. "A lot of Americans don't know this is still a major problem out there. I was back in Flint six weeks ago and I released a plan to invest $50 billion so we remove lead as a major public health threat. We need to do it, we can do it. and I will do it."
Gillibrand: "The first thing I'm going to do as president is I'm going to Clorox the Oval Office." #DemDates— FOX 2 Detroit (@FOX2News) August 1, 2019
Inslee, talking first on the issue of climate change, has said it's "all the issues that we Democrats care about" said it is health and economy. He then took a shot at the vice president's plan that was too middle ground and said we need to invoke his "gold standard."
Biden responded, said only 15 percent of the pollution put into the Earth comes from the United States, said there needs to be more help from other countries, which is why is work on the Paris Climate Accord was a defining piece of policy. Yang said the country was "already 10 years too late" and technology needs to be put in place to move people to higher ground.
Inslee: "I was in the zip code 48217 in a Detroit neighborhood the other day right next to an oil refinery where the kids have asthma and adults have cancer clusters - and after talking to these folks, I believe it doesn't matter what your zip code is, what color you are - you ought to have clean air and clean water in America."
The candidates largely agree on the overall goal of addressing climate change but differing in degrees of urgency.
Yang says he ran a business that created hundreds of jobs, including hundreds in Detroit. "The racial disparities are much, much worse than I'd ever imagined," he said.
Castro is the second Democratic presidential candidate in Wednesday's debate to explicitly label Trump a "racist." The former Obama Cabinet secretary was among several candidates hammering Trump as they sought to stand out on issues of race.
Gillibrand says she feels responsibility as "a white woman" to challenge institutional racism. She says it's not just up to the two leading black candidates, Sens. Kamala Harris and Cory Booker, to talk about race.
Bennet is chiding CNN moderators for asking questions about former Vice President Joe Biden's position on federally mandated busing in the 1970s when "our schools are as segregated today as they were 50 years ago."
Gabbard then cited concerns about Harris's past as Attorney General when she jailed thousands on marijuana charges and laughed about using the drug herself. "She fought to keep cash bail systems in place that impacts poor people in the worst way." In terms of death row, Gabbard tells Harris: "You actually blocked evidence from being revealed that would have freed them until you were forced to do so."
Harris retorts that she's actually been in a position where she could seek the death penalty on cases she prosecutor, she made a very difficult and often unpopular decisions not to. "History shows that, and I am very proud of those decisions."
After hearing protests regarding the killing of Eric Garner, de Blasio responded to officer who killed him was still on force, saying that it would never happen again "never be another tragedy, never be another Eric Garner." Gillibrand was unsatisfied with response "He should be fired. If I was mayor I would fire him."
Kirsten Gillibrand disagrees with Bill de Blasio's handling of the NYPD officer who killed Eric Garner: "He should be fired. He should be fired now." https://t.co/smAKZynlzS #DemDebate pic.twitter.com/f9juPsWaQ5— CNN (@CNN) August 1, 2019
Attacks on Biden continued during the second series of topics, starting with criminal justice. He first defended the bills he's authored during his tenure against Booker and Castro, before pushing back against critiques from de Blasio. Then his record was put to the test against Harris when he critiqued her time as Attorney General.
The debate turns to criminal justice. Booker taking shot at Biden for laws that set country "on fire" with criminal justice bills that were drafted by the vice president. Biden fired back at Booker's record as Mayor in New Jersey for endorsing stop and frisk laws in police force.
Booker invited Biden to come see the community he helped build in Newark after Biden said he did nothing in his eight years overseeing city. Castro sided with Booker, said Biden has "flip-flopped" on subject, then cited his own policy for holding police officers accountable.
CNN has provided the amount of time each candidate has spoken after the first hour:
After Biden said we should increase the number of people who can come into the country and become citizens, things got chippy between him and the New York City Mayor de Blasio asked Biden if he used his power to stop "those 11 million deportations" that took place when he was Vice President. When Biden deferred and said he kept his opinions to himself, Booker lashed out and said he couldn't invoke work done by Obama but also keep his opinions to himself.
Gillibrand: "We used to believe in this country to treat others how you want to be treated."
Castro responds to Biden on immigration: "One of us has learned the lessons of the past and one of us hasn't. ... What we need are politicians that actually have some guts on this issue" #DemDebate https://t.co/YM1tQQyymq pic.twitter.com/Z6j8JDw7ZY— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) August 1, 2019
Biden is interrupted by protesters regarding immigration.
Two in the audience chant, "3 million deportations" as candidates debate decriminalizing the U.S. southern border pic.twitter.com/bF3fafyFcD— Claire Hao (@clairehaoTMD) August 1, 2019
de Blasio's team has responded to earlier protesters.
To the protestors in the audience today: I heard you. I saw you. I thank you.— Bill de Blasio (@BilldeBlasio) August 1, 2019
This is what democracy looks like and no one said it was pretty. #DemDebate
Inslee: "We can no longer allow a white nationalist to be in the White House." #DemDebate— FOX 2 Detroit (@FOX2News) August 1, 2019
The debate turns to immigration.
When asked would decriminalizing border crossing send a message that the border is effectively open to all? Castro says open borders is a right-wing talking point. His immigration plan would make sure that they put undocumented who haven't committed a serious crime on a path to legalization.
In their second spar of the night, Harris and Bennett also discussed border policy. Harris said she was distraught by the conditions that children were kept in at detention centers. Gillibrand said there should be a civil violation against those that cross the border illegally, rather than a criminal one.
Harris on her visit to a migrant detention facility: "I saw children lined up single-file … . These children have not committed crimes and should be not treated like criminals" #DemDebate pic.twitter.com/O9GtTcfYtU— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) August 1, 2019
Among the health care conversation, Harris fended off several attacks against her health care plan from Bennett, Gabbard and Biden over the cost of her Medicare for all plan. A very consistent message pushed across the debate is the villainization of health care costs pushed by insurance companies.
"I don't know what math you do in New York or California," Biden said pointing at de Blasio and Harris's public plans. "Let's talk about math" retorted Harris talking about costs of overdose costs.
de Blasio: Donald Trump won this state of Michigan by saying he was going to disrupt the status quote -- how about we be the party that disrupts the status quo for the working families? #DemDebate
— FOX 2 Detroit (@FOX2News) August 1, 2019
Biden is criticizing Medicare-for-All backers as he argues in the Democratic presidential debate for his "public option" proposal to expand the Affordable Care Act without ending job-based insurance.
In a contrast to the Democrats debate's first night, the divide over which health care policies seemed less stark among the 10 candidates on stage on Wednesday.
Senator Michael Bennet took a shot at plans from Warren and Sanders' plan for health care by saying it's much more likely that Trump would win.
The bottom line is this: We must agree that access to health care must be a right and not just a privilege for those who can afford it.— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) August 1, 2019
30 million people are going without access to health care.
The cost of doing nothing is far too expensive. #DemDebate
Castro wants to strengthen Medicare for anyone who already has it, and if someone has a private insurance plan that's strong, they can keep it, but the profit of pharmaceutical companies should not determine who gets healthcare and who does not.
Yang says the current healthcare system makes it harder to start a business.
Like Tuesday night, the first point centered around health care. In the debate's first spar, Biden and Harris debated the California Senator's policy that offers private and public options. He critiqued the plan as taking too long to and costing too much, while she said of his plan leaves out too much of the public. Harris said under her proposed plan, babies will be born into the plan. "We will ensure that everyone has access to healthcare. She said in contrast, Biden's plan leaves out nearly 10 million Americans.
De Blasio rebuked both candidates, citing the costs of out-of-pocket expenses as being the plight of all middle class workers. Biden retorted we need to build upon Obamacare and put back in the polices that Trump took out. Wading into the debate, New York Senator Gillibrand talked about her child that needed care after an allergic reaction. "Let's not lose the forest through the trees."
Booker: "I was raised by two civil rights parents who always told me to keep my eye on the prize," and that's that Democrats believe that healthcare is a human right. Pitting moderates against progressives is dividing them in front of the enemy. #DemDebate— FOX 2 Detroit (@FOX2News) August 1, 2019
The debate has begun with opening statements.
Joe Biden is trying to keep it light with one of his top rivals and sharpest critics as Democratic presidential candidates begin their second debate Wednesday in Detroit.
As the former vice president and California Sen. Kamala Harris shook hands on stage, Biden smiled and said, "Go easy on me, kid."
Harris called Biden by his first name as she smiled in return.
Biden is a 76-year-old white man. Harris is a 54-year-old black woman.
Their generational and racial differences were on display last month in the first debate, when Harris hammered Biden for his opposition to federal court-ordered busing in the 1970s as a way to desegregate public schools like Harris's elementary school in California.
Biden has promised to defend his record more forcefully in this debate.
Biden: "This is America, and we are strong and great because of this diversity, not in spite of it, Mr. President. So Mr. President, let's get something straight - we love it, we are not leaving it, we're here to stay and we're certainly not going to leave it to you."
BREAKING: protesters interrupt Sen. Corey Booker opening remarks. They were there to protest New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and his handling of the death of Eric Garner @FOX2News pic.twitter.com/FOWD3iRTjx— Jessica Dupnack (@JDupnackFOX2) August 1, 2019
Per the Associated Press, Joe Biden's said he expects to face pointed questions about race in particular, having stumbled in the opening debate when confronted by California Sen. Kamala Harris over his record on school integration. The pair will be joined onstage by a second senator of color, Cory Booker of New Jersey, who in recent days seized on Biden's decades-old support for criminal justice laws that disproportionately hurt minorities. The advisers said that while Biden hoped to focus on President Donald Trump, he's ready to fight back against Harris and his other Democratic opponents.
With his party turning against itself on core issues, Biden will be forced to defend his record as nine eager rivals fight to knock him from his front-runner perch in the increasingly combative primary.
Biden, who leads virtually all early polls, will be considered the premier moderate on stage. In addition to Harris and Booker, his more progressive opponents include New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, former Obama administration housing chief Julián Castro, Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.
While the first primary votes won't come for six more months, there is a sense of urgency for the lower-tier candidates to break out. More than half the field could be blocked from the next round of debates altogether — and possibly pushed out of the race — if they fail to reach new polling and fundraising thresholds implemented by the Democratic National Committee.
Kamala Harris's press secretary Ian Sams spoke with FOX 2, saying viewers can expect to hear something like: "I know that you are struggling every night, and I have real plans that are achievable and direct that go right at the issues that keep you up at night. I think that's what you're going to hear her talking about tonight. The second thing you're going to hear her say is I'm the best candidate to beat Donald Trump. Look, I spent my career as a prosecutor. I know how to take on bad guys and I'm going to take on this bad guy and win."
Protesters are arrested for disturbing traffic near the Windsor Tunnel off of Jefferson near Randolph downtown Detroit. According to the group: "Immigrants and allies plan civil disobedience disruption just blocks away from the Democratic Primary Debate, demanding 2020 hopefuls recognize the daily crisis of family separation and deportation that immigrants in Detroit are facing. They will be marching to the debate at Fox Theater, calling for Democratic primary candidates to commit to ending all detention and deportation on day one in office, if elected." Detroit police brought in a department bus to aid in calming the situation.
FOLLOW-UP FROM YESTERDAY'S DEBATES:
Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign is reporting $1.1 million in new contributions as well as more than 70,000 new individual donations since Tuesday.
Sanders faced off Tuesday night in Detroit against nine rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination, including Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
The campaign reported his fundraising numbers Wednesday afternoon.
President Donald Trump is warning that his 2020 Democratic rivals will lead the country "into an economic sinkhole" as he weighs in on the first debate in Detroit.
Trump was uncharacteristically quiet through Tuesday night's debate but tweeted without evidence Wednesday morning that if he "hadn't won the 2016 Election" the U.S. "would be in a Great Recession/Depression."
Trump says the Democratic candidates "will lead us into an economic sinkhole the likes of which we have never seen before." He adds, "With me, only up!"
Ten Democratic candidates appeared Tuesday, including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Warren blamed Trump for racially unequal policies in economics and education. Sanders said Trump demonizes immigrants.
President Trump's press secretary for the 2020 election, Kayleigh McEnany, says the CNN moderators asked fair and important questions, but that the candidates revealed themselves about pushing the GOP talking points.
"We learned last night, there is no room for a JFK Democrat anymore. There is no room for a moderate Democrat anymore. You have to be a far left socialist in order to prevail," she said.
The 10 candidates clashed over issues and policies surrounding health care, race, immigration, the military and age. But in terms of a liberal or a moderate, McEnany is confident Trump can beat either.
"This president is a fighter. He was on a stage with 17 other Republican candidates and systematically managed to take each one down and win the Republican nomination. I think he knows he can do the same with these Democratic candidates," she said. "So whether it's Joe Biden who supports the Green New Deal and public option that would crowd out private insurance - or Bernie who supports the same policies - he knows that he's on the winning side of policy that will bring affordable healthcare and good economic results."
She pointed out that many Michiganders are feeling an upswing in the economy, too, and that our votes will once again be a key factor in the 2020 election.
"New poll of Michigan voters said 62% say the economy is in good shape, so I think a lot of Michigan voters are feeling it. You look at the fact there is going to be $6 billion in investment from Fiat Chrysler and GM in this state, and Ford. That's because of President Trump's policies. There is a lot of good here in Michigan: a 20-year low in unemployment, paychecks growing up twice as fast for low, middle income individuals. I think the average Michigander is feeling it and seeing it in their daily lives.
Michigan is extremely important. Look, this is not a Republican state. If you look, no Republican nominee won the state since 1980, '84 I believe it was, until President Trump. President Trump made Michigan a Trump state. It's key to his victory. We're going to be here a lot. We're here now for the Democrat debates. The president will be back to rally at some point. It's an important state for us, along with Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and many others."
Noticeable absent on Twitter last night, we asked if President Trump watched the debate and what his reaction was.
"He stayed out of it," McEnany said. "He's got a country to run, world affairs to lead. I'm sure he watched it but we'll wait to hear from him."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.