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Grading The First Democratic Presidential Debate46:43
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The Democrats in debate. Clinton, Sanders, O’Malley and more in Las Vegas. We’ll score the showdown and get your response.

Democratic presidential candidates from left, former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, and former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee take the stage before the CNN Democratic presidential debate Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015, in Las Vegas. (AP)
Democratic presidential candidates from left, former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, and former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee take the stage before the CNN Democratic presidential debate Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015, in Las Vegas. (AP)

It took a minute last night to adjust to just five Democrats on the stage in Las Vegas instead of 11 Republicans, with Hillary Clinton at the center instead of Donald Trump and a whole lot less machismo flowing. But the Democrats’ first debate of the 2016 campaign was a strong show. Bernie Sanders as the fired-up anti-oligarchy warrior for the middle class and the “don’t give a damn about the emails” guy  Hillary Clinton more bright and quick than we’ve seen her in many months. Jim Webb and Martin O’Malley and Lincoln Chafee as a quirky Greek chorus. This hour On Point, the Democrats in debate.
-- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Molly Ball, national political correspondent for the Atlantic. (@mollyesque)

Sam Frizell, reporter for TIME Magazine covering the 2016 presidential campaign. (@Sam_Frizell)

Janell Ross, race, gender, immigration and inequality reporter at the Washington Post. (@janellross)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Atlantic: Mitt Romney Surveys the 2016 Field — "Romney’s evolution to party elder statesman has been a somewhat unexpected coda to his political career. Rather than retreat to enjoy his car elevator and his many grandchildren, he has embraced a public role as the voice of the GOP’s moderate establishment. In 2014, he endorsed numerous candidates, helping the party establishment’s picks get through tough primaries."

TIME: What You Missed While Not Watching the First Democratic Debate -- "The candidates get closing statements, but the dynamic remains the same. Clinton is just better at this. Sanders is doing his thing. O’Malley has all the pieces but none of the connections. Chafee is weird. And Webb is unsatisfied. There has been talk about adding more Democratic debates in the coming months, but as the night draws to a close, it is not immediately clear what they would accomplish."

Washington Post: Who is Juan Carlos Lopez? Meet the CNN debate moderator. — "Tuesday night's premier 2016 presidential debate, like all the others so far, will feature three moderators. One of them will likely be unfamiliar to the vast majority of viewers. But know this: The reporter that many English-speaking viewers haven't heard of might ask some of the toughest questions."

Our Guests' Twitter Feeds From The #DemDebate

[storify url="https://storify.com/nicktheandersen/on-point-demdebate-oct-13-2015" width='500' scrolling='yes']

This program aired on October 14, 2015.

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