How To Watch The Democratic Debate If You Don’t Have Cable, Because The Fourth Showdown Will Be The Highest-Stakes Yet

On Sunday, the Democrats will debate each other for the fourth time this season. The stakes will be higher this time than in any of the previous Democratic forums, as Bernie Sanders leads Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire, and the two are now polling neck-and-neck in Iowa, which will hold its caucus less than two weeks after the debate. NBC News is co-hosting the next debate, so naturally, you'll be able to watch it there if you've got a cable subscription. And thankfully, that's not the only option — there are plenty of ways to watch the Democratic debate if you don't have cable.

The big question, of course, is whether the debate will be available to stream for free, and I'm happy to report that yes, it will be. That hasn't been the case for every debate this cycle, but most of them have allowed viewers without a cable subscription to tune in to the debate for free. NBC News did the same, perhaps out of recognition that a debate airing on a Sunday night could use as many viewers as possible.

Regardless, if you plan to be one of those viewers, and you don't have cable, you've got a couple of options.

Stream It For Free Over The Web


If you're on a desktop or laptop, the easiest way to watch the debate is probably on YouTube. They're co-hosting the debate with NBC News, and will make the debate available to stream for free on Sunday night over here. Alternatively, a stream will be available at as well.

Use A Mobile App


It'll also be possible to watch the debate on the go. The NBC News app is available on iOS, Android, and Amazon Fire devices, and it'll have a free stream on debate night as well.

Use A Streaming Device

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Determined to make sure the debate is viewable on every type of screen conceivable, NBC News is also making the Democratic debate available through Roku and Apple TV players. If you're on a Roku, you can watch it through the NBC News App, while Apple TV users can find it on the tvOS App Store.

Go To A Friend's House


Debates aren't as fun to watch alone, as I discovered firsthand during the last Republican debate. Why not go to a friend's place? You'll have someone to discuss it with, and it'll feel more like a special event than watching it on your laptop in bed. Not that there's anything wrong with that option, of course (and if there were, I certainly wouldn't be in a place to criticize).

Find A Viewing Party


If you really want to make this a special thing, you should consider going to a local debate watch party. There's no centralized listing of these, as they're often one-off events hosted by local organizations or individuals, but a quick Google search for "democratic debate January watch party [your city]" is a good place to start. Often, local Democratic Party affiliates will host watch parties, and sometimes movie theaters do as well.