The Democratic National Committee announced the first four Democratic debates of 2020.
CNN and The Des Moines Register will host a debate on Jan. 14 in Des Moines ahead of Iowa’s caucuses; ABC News, WMUR-TV and Apple News will host in Manchester, NH, on Feb. 7, ahead of the vote there; NBC News and MSNBC, in partnership with The Nevada Independent, will host a Feb. 19 debate in Las Vegas before the Nevada caucuses; and CBS News and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute will co-host on Feb. 25 in Charleston before the South Carolina primary, with Twitter as a debate partner.
The next debate will be held next week in Los Angeles. PBS NewsHour and Politico are hosting the event on Dec. 19, to be held at Loyola Marymount University. CNN will provide a simulcast. Seven candidates have qualified for the event, according to FiveThirtyEight: Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Andrew Yang and Tom Steyer. Cory Booker and Tulsi Gabbard, who qualified for previous debates, have yet to do so, and Kamala Harris dropped out of the race last week.
The Jan. 14 debate will be the third that CNN co-hosts this cycle. NBC News, MSNBC and Telemundo hosted the first Democratic debates in June, and MSNBC co-hosted a debate with The Washington Post last month. ABC News hosted an event in September. This will be CBS News’ first time co-hosting a debate this cycle.
The stakes will undoubtedly be higher as candidates jockey for airplay in advance of early state votes, but the DNC has yet to announce the criteria for qualification.
An issue for some of the candidates may be the timeline of a Senate impeachment trial. That would force Warren, Klobuchar, Sanders, Booker and Michael Bennet to remain in Washington, as all senators will serve as jurors. The DNC indicated that it would work with campaigns on any scheduling issues.