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7 takeaways from the Democratic debate in Houston

Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Political News

Still sitting there, battered and benumbed?

Take 10 presidential candidates, put them on a stage for nearly three hours and what you get is an onslaught of verbiage that taxed even the most stoic political devotee.

None of the two prior rounds, in June and July, did much to shake the fundamentals of the Democratic race, and it remains to be seen whether Thursday's marathon session changes that equilibrium. It doesn't seem likely.

Until that's clear, here are seven takeaways from the long night's journey in Houston:

-- JOE BIDEN GOES THE DISTANCE

The former vice president and Democratic front-runner turned in one of his strongest and most assertive performances.

 

He tossed out some of his usual word salad, especially as the evening wore on. But he credibly defended himself and delivered one of the punchiest zingers during an exchange with the Democratic socialist Bernie Sanders over his support for a government-run, "Medicare for All" program.

Biden challenged the notion that projected savings enjoyed by corporations would make their way back to workers.

"As a matter of fact, they will in our bill," the Vermont senator replied.

"Well, let me tell you something," Biden shot back. "For a socialist, you've got a lot more confidence in corporate America than I do."

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