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Dem Candidates Come Out Swinging During Las Vegas Debate. How Does The Rhetoric Sit With Voters?




Democratic presidential hopefuls Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren speak during a break in the ninth Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season co-hosted by NBC News, MSNBC, Noticias Telemundo and The Nevada Independent at the Paris Theater in Las Vegas, Nevada, on February 19, 2020.
Democratic presidential hopefuls Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren speak during a break in the ninth Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season co-hosted by NBC News, MSNBC, Noticias Telemundo and The Nevada Independent at the Paris Theater in Las Vegas, Nevada, on February 19, 2020.
MARK RALSTON/AFP via Getty Images

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Six Democratic candidates took the stage during Wednesday night’s debate in Las Vegas. Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who’s spent more than $300 million of his own money on ads, only qualified just days before the debate. 

Various analyses from the night did not paint a pretty picture for Bloomberg, with experts saying he came into the night overconfident and unprepared. Sen. Elizabeth Warren made aggressive arguments against the former mayor. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and former South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg sparred with each other over several issues, including their amount of experience. Former VP Joe Biden continued with his attempt to convince voters he’s the best candidate to take on President Donald Trump. Some commentators labeled Sen. Bernie Sanders as the one with the edge coming out of the debate. It was indeed a night of heated exchanges, without much fire aimed at Trump himself. So, how does this fiery rhetoric sit with voters though?

Today on AirTalk, Larry sits down with an expert on political rhetoric to recap the night’s events. We want to know your thoughts. Did the rhetoric from the debate encourage you to shift your support to a different candidate? Join the conversation by calling 866-893-5722.    

Guest:

Mitchell McKinney, professor of communication and the director of the Political Communications Institute at the University of Missouri; his research interests include presidential debates, presidential rhetoric and political campaigns; he tweets @MSMcKinney