The three candidates competing for the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential nomination each got a chance to make their closing case to Iowa Caucus-goers during a “town hall” meeting tonight.
The forum was held at Drake University and broadcast on CNN. Hillary Clinton gave this answer as she tried to win over a skeptical Bernie Sanders supporter.
“I’ve been on the frontlines of change and progress since I was your age. I have been fighting to give kids and women and the people who have been left out and left behind the chance to make the most out of their lives,” Clinton said.
Sanders — the first to sit down last night on the CNN set — was asked if Clinton was “better prepared” to be the next president.
“This calls for a standing up response,” Sanders said.
Sanders then ticked off a range of issues — from Wall Street regulations to voting to go to war in Iraq — where Sanders argued his judgment had been better than Clinton’s.
“Experience is important, but it is not the only thing,” Sanders said.
Sanders is an independent senator from Vermont. An undecided voter asked Sanders why he wasn’t bothered by being called a socialist.
“What democratic socialism means to me is that economic rights, the right to economic security, should exist in the United States of America,” Sanders said.
Clinton — the former secretary of state — says she respects Sanders, but believes she’s better prepared to be country’s next president and find “common ground” with Republicans to make progress on issues.
“It’s hard. If it were easy, hey, there wouldn’t be any contest, but it’s not easy,” Clinton said. “There are very different visions, different values, different forces at work and you have to have somebody who is a proven, proven fighter.”
Former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley presented himself as the candidate who could “upset the apple cart” on Caucus Night. And O’Malley stiff-armed any suggestion that his backers should shift to the Clinton or Sanders camps in their precincts on Caucus Night.
“My message to the O’Malley supporters across this state is this: Hold strong at your caucus,” O’Malley said, to cheers.
The leading Republican presidential candidates will meet in Des Moines Thursday evening for a debate that will be broadcast on Fox News.