Yet another Democratic presidential debate has come and gone, the second of just six we'll get to see this primary campaign season, and it was an informative and entertaining affair. Unlike the GOP debates, which are almost inherently chaotic and intractable thanks to the their overstuffed fields (there are still 15 Republicans in the race), the stage on the Democratic side is a bit more sparse, with just three candidates left. Obviously, that means they get a little more elbow room for closing statements — you can read Hillary Clinton's closing statement from the second debate here.
The evening saw three candidates square off: frontrunner and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, second-place challenger and Vermont senator Bernie Sanders, and former Governor of Maryland Martin O'Malley, who trails distantly in the single-digits. As it stands now, the race is very much looking like Clinton's to lose, as she's retaken the lead in New Hampshire, has a big lead in Iowa, and is downright destroying Sanders in South Carolina. But Sanders proved to be a capable opponent on Saturday night, scoring some decisive blows before Clinton delivered the following, impassioned closing statement.
I've heard a lot about me during this debate, and I'm going to keep thinking and talking about you. Because ultimately, I think the president's job is to do everything possible, everything that she can do, to lift up the people of this country, starting with our children, and moving forward — I've spent my entire life, since I started as a young lawyer for the children's defense fund, trying to figure out how we can even the odds for so many people in America, this great country of ours, who are behind, who don't have a chance, and that's what I will do as your president. I will work my heart out. I need your help. All of you in Iowa, I need you to caucus for me. Please go to HIllaryClinton.com, and be part of making this country what we know it can and should be.
All in all, Clinton has a perfectly serviceable night, and it'd be a shock if she suffered much in the polls after Saturday night's debate, but she wasn't quite as commanding or in-control as she was in the first one — Sanders was much more confrontational with her this time around. It'll be fascinating to see how the next debate goes — it's scheduled for December 19th, to be aired on ABC News.