The Democratic National Committee and MSNBC announced Wednesday afternoon the name of the 10 candidates who will be participating in the first Democratic presidential debate of the 2016 electoral season. Only the top 10 candidates in the five most recent polls will be allowed to participate in the debate, which will be moderated by MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Chris Matthews, and PBS’s Gwen Ifill.
The meteoric rise of media mogul Oprah Winfrey (23%) is posing a threat to both establishment favorite Hillary Clinton (13%) and insurgent socialist Bernie Sanders (11%), both of whom must be concerned with what the beloved Chicago politician-in-training might say given that she’s vowed to “hurt anybody” who criticizes her.
Rachel Maddow told Politico’s Dylan Byers that MSNBC has a secret plan to prevent Winfrey from dominating the debate, but declined to outline it in specific detail. “Rest assured,” she said, “it’s magnificent.”
Joining that triumvirate on the Cleveland stage will be a trio of formerly disgraced politicians who have managed to resurrect their careers in light of the multiple indictments against Hillary Clinton for her role in Benghazigate. Anthony Weiner (7%), Rod Blagojevich (6%), and John Edwards (5%) all hope to escape the shadow of their own comparatively minor failures by hiding in the massive one currently threatening to engulf the Clinton campaign.
Some of the more entertaining candidates with whom they will share the stage are the fading Michael Moore (3%) and the ultimate single-issue candidate, Jenny McCarthy (2%), who will no doubt seek to educate both Toby Keith (1%) and Gary Hart (1%) about the dangers of childhood vaccination. Keith and Hart, meanwhile, will do their best to justify their continued existence during the main event…
—Scott Eric Kaufman and Benjamin Wheelock
What If the Democratic Presidential Primary Were as Bizarre as the GOP One Currently Is?