Tags: debate | highlights | billionaires | clinton

Democratic Debate Highlights: Freeloading Billionaires and Clinton's Legacy

Wednesday, 20 November 2019 10:50 PM

The fifth presidential debate featured sharp exchanges on Wednesday over U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren's proposed wealth tax, how to expand healthcare coverage and which of the Democratic contenders is best prepared to lead.

Here are some highlights from the stage in Atlanta, where 10 of the candidates seeking the Democratic nomination to take on Republican President Donald Trump in November 2020 are debating.

FREELOADING BILLIONAIRES

Warren answered a question about how she would unify a divided country by reintroducing her proposed 2% tax on wealth beyond $50 million, with an additional 4% tax on wealth beyond $1 billion.

"I'm tired of freeloading billionaires," said Warren, whose proposal has prompted contentious responses from several prominent billionaires in recent weeks.

"Regardless of party affiliation, people understand across this country, our government is working better and better for the billionaires, for the rich, for the well connected, and worse and worse for everyone else," Warren said, adding that the tax would pay for free public college and universal childcare, while also canceling most student loan debt.

U.S. Senator Cory Booker was asked whether he agreed with Warren's proposal, leading to the first policy disagreement of the night.

Booker said he did not support Warren's wealth tax but if elected, he would pursue "fair and just taxation where millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share." He agreed with Warren that "we need to raise the estate tax, we need to tax capital gains as ordinary income."

CLINTON'S LEGACY

U.S. Representative Tulsi Gabbard doubled down when asked about her clash with the party's 2016 presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, last month.

Gabbard, an Iraq war veteran who has centered her campaign on opposition to overseas military intervention, said the Democratic Party "continues to be influenced by the foreign policy establishment in Washington, represented by Hillary Clinton and others' foreign policy, by the military-industrial complex and other greedy corporate interests."

Asked to respond, U.S. Senator Kamala Harris defended Clinton. Gabbard criticized former Democratic President Barack Obama's administration on Fox News, said Harris, who linked Gabbard to former Trump adviser Steve Bannon and brought up her support for Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad.

Harris said she was the candidate who could rebuild the coalition of voters that elected Obama twice.

Gabbard shot back at what she called Harris' "lies and smears and innuendoes," and said Harris would continue U.S. foreign policy failures of the past.

© 2019 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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The fifth presidential debate featured sharp exchanges on Wednesday over U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren's proposed wealth tax, how to expand healthcare coverage and which of the Democratic contenders is best prepared to lead. Here are some highlights from the stage in...
debate, highlights, billionaires, clinton
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2019-50-20
Wednesday, 20 November 2019 10:50 PM
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