Democratic debate recap: Who faced attacks, who did well, and who quoted the Bible?

The Democratic debate in Charleston has concluded. Here are some of the major moments, and how our reporters and subscribers reacted in real time.

Candidates spar with Sanders

Reactions from our live chat:

I was going to ask whether this was the first time Warren has taken a jab at Sanders in a debate because it’s the first time I can recall.
Annabella Abrao, L.A. Times Subscriber
Annabella, it is the first time Warren directly contrasted herself with Sanders. She had the opportunity to shortly before the Iowa caucuses, when there were reports that Sanders told her that a woman would not be elected president, and while she confirmed he made the statement to her, she notably declined to take a shot at him and called him her “friend.”
Seema Mehta, Politics reporter

Gun Control Takes Center Stage

Reactions from our live chat:

Reporters, something I don’t understand in the gun safety debate is what would holding gun manufacturers accountable actually do?
Annabella Abrao, L.A. Times Subscriber
Good question, Annabella. Some think that opening manufacturers up to legal liability for shootings could put pressure on those companies to stop manufacturing certain types of weapons or accessories.
Matt Pearce, Politics Reporter

Candidates questioned on coronavirus concerns

Reactions from our live chat:

Coronavirus is a complex policy issues that touches a lot of areas -- border control, healthcare, federal management. “I’m not going to give my website right now, I’m going to give the CDC’s website,” Klobuchar says in an unusual direct appeal to the audience to pay attention to coronavirus.
Matt Pearce, politics reporter
I’m surprised we haven’t seen more discussion of coronavirus -- given what we heard from the CDC today and what’s happened to the stock market the last two days.
Seema Mehta, Politics Reporter

That’s it for our live coverage. Read the full chat below, or click here to check out Mark Barabak’s 5 Takeaways.

  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Hi everyone. This is Seema Mehta, a political reporter in Los Angeles. Welcome to our live chat. I just returned home from covering the Nevada caucuses, as well as the last Democratic debate in Las Vegas. So who’s onstage tonight for this debate? Former Vice President Joe Biden; former New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg; former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg; Sens. Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren; and California philanthropist Tom Steyer.

    After months of scrapping around the edges, the gloves really came off in last week’s debate, and I expect to see more of the same tonight. Much of the fire was aimed at Michael Bloomberg last week, and he did not handle it well. Tonight, I’ll be looking to see if he learned anything from last week and whether he can improve his performance. I also expect to see a lot of scrutiny of Bernie Sanders after his strong victory in the Nevada caucuses.

    3:20 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    This is Matt Pearce, recently back from the campaign trail in Nevada, where Bernie Sanders carried out a whooping, cementing his status as the race's frontrunner. I'll be watching particularly closely for Elizabeth Warren's performance this debate. She was the star of the show last time for her brutal attacks on Bloomberg, but she has never, ever come that close to criticizing her fellow progressive Sanders. In fact, the pair have often been a buffer for each other, knocking down criticisms from moderates. With the window closing for Warren to gain ground, does that finally change tonight?

    3:21 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Hi, this is Doyle McManus in Washington. I agree with Seema: Last week's debate in Nevada was mostly about Michael Bloomberg's debut, and the other candidates' very successful efforts to knock him down a peg. This week, in South Carolina, will they gang up on Bernie Sanders, to try to stop his relentless march toward the nomination?

    3:29 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Bloomberg and Pete Buttigieg have already launched bare-knuckled attacks on Sanders, so we can assume they'll keep it up. Who else will join in? Will Joe Biden tell South Carolinians that if they don't want Bernie to be the nominee, they'd all better rally behind him? And can Amy Klobuchar regain any footing?

    3:31 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Hi, everybody. This is Tyrone Beason in Charleston. I'll be watching the debate tonight with folks in the majority African American North Charleston area to get their reactions to what's happening half an hour away at the debate. I expect Sanders to take some hits tonight, of course.

    3:31 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Also, history weighs on everything in this colonial city, and in the minds of many black voters. In just a few days I've driven past cotton fields and former rice plantations. The beauty and wealth of Charleston are to a great extent the result of the massive riches taken in by crops harvested with slave labor and the selling of Africans. The debate itself will take place steps from Mother Emanuel AME Church, where a white supremacist killed 9 African Americans in 2015.
    I'm looking to see how the candidates talk about the weight of America's history of racism toward African Americans, given that the Civil War also started here and the city still deals with rampant poverty, housing segregation, poor schools, bias in policing and other problems in the local black community that are the legacy of racial oppression.

    3:37 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    The subject of reparations just might come up tonight. Read my piece from last summer on it, reported from the Charleston area, here.

    3:47 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter
    3:55 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    For those of you just joining us, here are all the details you need to know about tonight's Democratic presidential debate in Charleston. Follow along tonight as my colleagues and I chat about the candidates and how they try to position themselves going into the South Carolina primary on Saturday.

    4:09 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter
    4:09 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    A couple data points about the level of interest in tonight's debate, the last before the South Carolina primary and Super Tuesday, when California and 13 other states will vote: The face-off is taking place in front of a crowd of 1,600 people at the Gaillard Center Performance Hall and CBS News reported issuing more than 500 media credentials.

    4:42 PM
  • Adriana Lacy Adriana Lacy Audience engagement editor

    Hello everyone, my name is Adriana Lacy and I am an audience engagement editor at the L.A. Times. Thank you all for joining us for tonight’s live chat. In addition to our political reporters, we have two subscribers participating in the chat. We’ll have them introduce themselves now.

    4:49 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Hello. I’m Annabella Abrao from West Los Angeles. I have a master's in library and information science and I have worked in public and academic libraries. I was raised in Los Angeles and consider myself a left-leaning Democrat. The issues I’m most concerned about in the 2020 election are climate change and inequality.

    4:49 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I'm Sally Frautschy from Santa Monica. I’m a Professor at UCLA in Neurology and in the Geriatrics at the Veteran's Administration hospital. I consider myself a center-left Democrat. The most important issues for me in the 2020 election are healthcare including veterans, the high cost of drugs and executive power.

    4:50 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Glad we have some subscribers joining us! Annabella, Sally, who are the top candidates you're looking at?

    4:56 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I am interested in anyone who can beat Trump. So candidates that I like the most are not necessarily relevant. I want Warren as first choice, but I also like Steyer. Somewhat interested in Amy although that interest is dwindling.

    4:58 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    My top two candidates are Bernie and Warren, so I will definitely be paying attention to their performances. I do not support Bloomberg at all, but I am curious to see if he tries to improve his debate performance.

    4:58 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    All right readers, the candidates are walking out on stage. We've got a new participant, Tom Steyer, joining us after missing last debate. And keep your eyes peeled for this debate -- at the last debate, some of the biggest shots fired came in the first five minutes.

    5:03 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Interesting new quirk: The moderators are soliciting some questions on Twitter.

    5:04 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Opening question to Sanders is about the low unemployment rate, and how he can convince voters that democratic socialism is a good bet in a time of economic prosperity.

    5:04 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Sanders, talking about the economy, takes immediate shot at Michael Bloomberg and billionaires.

    5:04 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Sanders still hasn't answered the question on how he can help the economy.

    5:05 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg jumps right in to accuse Sanders of being a Russian puppet.

    5:05 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    As someone who just graduated into a very competitive job market and am struggling to find a full time job with benefits, Bernie's focus on helping my generation is something that really speaks to me.

    5:05 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Bloomberg, who seemed unprepared last debate, appears to have done some practicing before tonight's debate.

    5:06 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Sanders shoots right back to accuse Bloomberg of being cozy with Xi Jingping of China.

    5:06 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Progressive ideas are popular ideas, even if there are a lot of people on this stage who won't say so." -Warren, who says she thinks she will be a more popular president than Sanders.

    5:06 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Warren, in her first chance to speak, immediately goes into why she believes she would make a better president than Sanders. She's not being as aggressive as she was with Bloomberg last week, but she is directly contrasting herself with Sanders, which is a first.

    5:07 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Warren now getting into some of her harshest criticism of Sanders this cycle, saying that his team "trashed" her for her past work.

    5:07 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Buttigieg continuing down the lane he's followed lately, casting himself as an outsider who would mark a change of tone from other top Democrats, with the implication that a Sanders candidacy would be toxic and exhausting.

    5:08 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Seema, I was going to ask whether this was the first time Warren has taken a jab at Sanders in a debate because it's the first time I can recall.

    5:09 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Buttigieg, saying that the American people would be exhausted by a Trump-Sanders general election, is trying to be the adult in the room and soothing, channelling how Kamala Harris tried to behave in debates last summer.

    5:09 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Steyer's an interesting addition to the chemistry of this stage, because he's typically been a slightly less aggressive presence than the other candidates, especially with Andrew Yang now out of the race.

    5:10 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Annabella, it is the first time Warren directly contrasted herself with Sanders. She had the opportunity to shortly before the Iowa caucuses, when there were reports that Sanders told her that a woman would not be elected president, and while she confirmed he made the statement to her, she notably declined to take a shot at him and called him her "friend."

    5:10 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I'm hearing my name mentioned a little bit tonight, I wonder why," Sanders cracks.

    5:11 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Being the front-runner has its drawbacks.

    5:11 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Here's that exchange between Sanders and Warren, in case you missed it

    5:11 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    It seems Bernie continues to not propose details on how to pay for any of his plans.

    5:12 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Buttigieg now defending himself from Sanders' accusations that Buttigieg has a lot of billionaires supporting his campaign.

    5:12 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "If you are watching right now and you're a billionaire, I will raise your taxes," Buttigieg says, then asking if they support him to donate the "legal maximum" to his campaign.

    5:13 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Sally and Annabella, do you care when you hear a candidate has received contributions from billionaires?

    5:13 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    The billionaire angle is tedious rhetoric. Some billionaires pay taxes and help the world with philanthropy.

    5:13 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    You beat me to it!

    5:13 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Biden got kind of a curveball question about why his support has been dwindling among black voters, who have been his firewall -- up until now. "I intend to win South Carolina."

    5:14 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    That's a risky move, for Biden to proclaim that he will win South Carolina.

    5:14 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Yeesh. Biden now getting asked if he will continue campaigning if he doesn't win South Carolina, which is kind of a no-win framing for him.

    5:14 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Our reporter Jenny Jarvie recently wrote about Joe Biden's relationship with Black voters

    5:14 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:14 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Biden went after Sanders for voting against the Brady Bill and folks at this watch party liked it. "They took the gloves off," says Darryl Thompson, a truck driver from nearby Summerview. He's one of the voters I'm sitting with tonight.

    5:14 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    He does have a fundraiser scheduled at former Paramount chief Sherry Lansing's house on Wednesday in L.A.

    5:14 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Applause in the room when Biden says, "I will win South Carolina."

    5:15 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I care about who the billionaire is and whether he/she has conflicts of interest, but if a billionaire fighting climate change donates I'm happy with that.

    5:15 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I have over 100 black elected officials that have endorsed me, a lot of them are in the audience tonight," Bloomberg says, in response to a question about his controversial support of stop and frisk when he was mayor of New York.

    5:15 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Seema, it does not bother me if a billionaire donates within the legal limit to a candidate. But I do not like it when candidates host big money fundraisers.

    5:16 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Biden has been pretty feisty and crisp -- especially for Biden -- so far.

    5:16 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Yes, in effect it was," Buttigieg says, when asked whether he thought Bloomberg's stop-and-frisk policy was racist. But he acknowledges that he hasn't exactly been unscathed about criticism from black residents in his own city, South Bend. "None of us has the lived experience" of being racially discriminated against, Buttigieg said.

    5:16 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I know if I were black, my successful would be a lot harder to achieve," Bloomberg says. "That's just a fact" and we should do something about it, Bloomberg says.

    5:17 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Klobuchar with the first Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. reference tonight.

    5:17 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    "Thank you!" a woman says when Buttigieg points out that no candidates of color are on that debate stage talking about racism and inequities.

    5:18 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    The debate pivots to Elizabeth Warren and her criticism of Mike Bloomberg's electability.

    5:19 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Warren's probably got an oppo file three inches thick on the wealthy former mayor. She's racing through a list of his donor support of Republican candidates over the years.

    5:19 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Warren has clearly done her homework as she recites the Republican candidates who Bloomberg has funded, including Lindsey Graham -- a potent message to South Carolina Democrats as Graham has transformed from an ally of John McCain to a confidante of President Trump.

    5:20 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Effective punch by Warren: "Who funded Lindsey Graham's campaign [in South Carolina] last time? Mayor Bloomberg ... He cannot earn the trust of the core of the Democratic Party."

    5:20 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I don't care how much money Mayor Bloomberg has, the core of the Democratic Party will never trust him," Warren says of Bloomberg, striking right at the heart of his candidacy -- with a criticism that some Democrats might lob at Bernie Sanders instead: "He is the riskiest candidate standing on this stage."

    5:20 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Watching the way Warren calls out Bloomberg really shows me what a strong and tough candidate she is. It definitely assures me that she can successfully debate and defeat Trump.

    5:21 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I have the experiences, I have the resources, and I have the record," Bloomberg says, defending himself, pointing out that he won three races in progressive New York.

    5:21 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    The biggest problem I have with Bloomberg is that he diluted the support for liberal moderate candidates comprising 70% of the vote, allowing Bernie to become the front runner.

    5:21 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    You can really tell that Warren feels in her wheelhouse when she's going on the attack against Bloomberg.

    5:21 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Annabella -- we heard a lot of people with similar sentiments about Warren's debate performance last week. The question is: Is it too late?

    5:21 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Warren brings up the allegations that Bloomberg told a pregnant employee to "kill it." Bloomberg denies it.

    5:22 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    For the second debate in a row, Warren demands Bloomberg's company lift nondisclosure agreements with female employees with complaints.

    5:22 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I think Warren should be targeting Sanders more. She only did that at the beginning so far. Instead she is criticizing Bloomberg.

    5:23 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Here's a bit more background on Bloomberg releasing at least three women from non-disclosure agreements

    5:23 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:23 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I don't remember what they were," Bloomberg says of the "jokes" he's been sued over by female employees, saying there's only complaints of him "making a comment or two" in three legal complaints his company has identified over the last 30 years. "I don't know what else she wants us to do."

    5:23 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "The trouble is with this senator, enough is never enough," Bloomberg said. "We did what she asked, and we probably made the world better because of it"

    5:24 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Seema, I'm not sure! I will admit that early on I was all in for Warren, but in the last few months I have sided more with Sanders. I do think Warren continuing to call out Bloomberg re: past allegations of sexism is really smart. It's definitely caught my attention.

    5:24 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "If you get nominated, we'll be relitigating it all year!" Buttigieg pops in.

    5:24 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg is back exactly where he doesn't want to be, defending himself against allegations of his personal conduct.

    5:24 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    The crowd is booing, and it's hard to tell what at.

    5:24 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Sanders now getting asked if he can "do the math for the rest of us" on how he plans to pay for Medicare for All, his central policy proposal.

    5:25 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    We are now pivoting to healthcare.

    5:25 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Sally and Annabella, what's your reaction when you hear that the costs for Sanders' plans would run in the tens of trillions of dollars?

    5:26 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "The math does not add up," Klobuchar says of Sanders.

    5:26 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    CBS's Norah O'Donnell asks Sanders to explain his math on Medicare for All. "How many hours do you have?" he replies. Not a great answer

    5:26 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Usually Sanders promises things without specifics, but Sanders' citation of the recent Lancet article is extremely impressive. Prevention of age-related diseases will save money.

    5:27 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    When it comes to how to pay for Medicare For All, I admit that I do not really worry about it. We spend so much money on the military and other things that I'd rather have a candidate who was going to focus on getting healthcare for everyone rather than one who wasn't or too hesitant to even try.

    5:27 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Is it my turn?" Sanders asks as the other candidates talk over each other in trying to attack him.

    5:28 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Interested in seeing where candidates stand on healthcare? Read more here

    5:29 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:29 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    The camera just pulled back to a wide angle of all the seven candidates talking, with their hands up, beckoning to the moderators, and it's like one of those scenic Renaissance paintings where everything is happening at once.

    5:29 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Buttigieg accuses Sanders of an "incredible shrinking pricetag" on his single-payer plan, saying it adds up to "four more years of Donald Trump."

    5:30 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "We got a House to worry about, we got a Senate to worry about," Buttigieg says, which is a different kind of electability attack on Sanders -- not just against his own viability, but the pressure he could bring on more moderate Democrats in swing districts who don't necessarily agree with his sweeping policy proposals.

    5:31 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Wow, Darryl and Erica Cokley, a mother of three from Charleston who's reactions I'm also gauging, are not impressed at all with this back-and-forth. "They need a time out," Erica said. "And they want to lead our country?"

    5:31 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Unusual little signifier of Steyer's unusual strength in South Carolina -- Biden is attacking Steyer for previously having invested in a private prison.

    5:31 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    *company

    5:31 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    We're getting an unusual glimpse of Steyer under pressure, and he seems pretty fired up over criticism of his history on racial justice. "I have worked tirelessly on this, and you know I'm right," Steyer tells, staring straight at Biden.

    5:33 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    This is one of my primary concerns with potentially nominating a billionaire, how much of their money comes from supporting things like private prison companies.

    5:33 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    This is what Biden's referring to re Steyer -- here's a look Michael Finnegan and I took at Steyer's past controversial business practices, including investing in private prison.

    5:33 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter
    5:33 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Biden is arguing that he ought to be the nominee to help win the Senate back. Buttigieg says he ought to be the nominee to help keep the House. That's an appeal to well-organized Democratic regulars, but it won't mean much to ordinary voters

    5:34 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg says he spent $100 million to help elect 20 of the new House Democrats.

    5:34 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg is probably happier talking about his political spending than his company's nondisclosure agreements.

    5:35 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Seema, i don't understand Buttigieg's logic of how he can keep the House blue.

    5:35 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Freudian slip: It sounded as if he said: "All those Democrats, I bough -- I got them."

    5:35 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Crowd boos lustily when Sanders says Bloomberg's base of support are all billionaires.

    5:36 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    (Part of the crowd, anyway.)

    5:36 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Sally great question -- some Democratic strategists argue that if Sanders is at the top of the ticket, some Democratic voters won't turn out to support him, and this will have a ripple effect on the rest of the ballot, impacting congressional and legislative races across the country.

    5:36 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Can anybody in this room imagine moderate Republicans going over and voting for him?" Bloomberg says of Sanders.

    5:36 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "A progressive agenda is popular, Mayor Bloomberg," Warren jumps in, again playing the role of tag-team with Bernie Sanders on legitimizing a much more aggressive liberal agenda in this Democratic primary.

    5:37 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "This is a moment to choose hope over fear," Warren says as the debate goes to commercial break.

    5:37 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    So subscribers, what do you think of that opening round?

    5:38 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Our subscribers will answer Matt's question after we get back from the commercial break

    5:38 PM
  • Adriana Lacy Adriana Lacy Audience engagement editor

    Democratic candidates agree on many prescriptions for the country’s problems, including undoing many of Trump’s policies.  But on a wide range of issues, their ideas diverge in ways large and small. As we take our first commercial break, here’s where they stand on key issues:

    5:38 PM
  • Adriana Lacy Adriana Lacy Audience engagement editor
    5:38 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    The California primary is coming up next week. Here's everything you need to know from our politics team

    5:39 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:40 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    And for all your commercial break needs, here's an informational video on how to vote in California

    5:40 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:40 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    And we're back!

    5:42 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Interesting! Sanders is definitely the target this round and I think he is doing alright in defending himself. I do like that Warren, Sanders are calling out billionaires.

    5:42 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    We've compiled a list of candidates' stances on gun control. You can read more about those policy stances here

    5:43 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:43 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Biden continues a trend in recent days, attack Bernie Sanders for having a somewhat more moderate record on gun control over his career; Sanders has recently tacked into a much more liberal posture with more mainstream Democrats.

    5:44 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    Reporters, something I don't understand in the gun safety debate is what would holding gun manufacturers accountable actually do?

    5:44 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Seema. When did Sanders vote against the Brady bill, when was he endorsed by the NRA and when did the NRA give him the D-?

    5:45 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    The issue of guns is such an important topic in Charleston, where a horrific church shooting took place in 2015 resulting in the death of nine African Americans.

    5:45 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Biden immediately uses the issue to go after Sanders over his past record on gun rights.

    5:45 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Good question, Annabella. Some think that opening manufacturers up to legal liability for shootings could put pressure on those companies to stop manufacturing certain types of weapons or accessories.

    5:46 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Seems like this crowd in South Carolina is more skeptical of Bernie Sanders and more up on Mike Bloomberg than the last crowd in Nevada.

    5:47 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "If I could finish?" Klobuchar says, as Biden jumps in aggressively to defend his gun control record.

    5:47 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Uncle Dick in the deer stand," Klobuchar's version of Joe Sixpack, makes an appearance again as she talks about gun control

    5:48 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I'm glad that Pete is challenging some of Bernie's claims about gun control.

    5:49 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Matt, you're giving me flashbacks of covering Sarah Palin in 2008, when she was McCain's pick for VP and introduced Joe the Plumber to the United States.

    5:49 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Unique inversion in this debate as Buttigieg goes after Sanders for not being radical enough for not being willing to get rid of the Senate filibuster.

    5:49 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I am proud to have a D-minus grade from the NRA; if elected president, it will get worse than that," Sanders says.

    5:50 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I like Steyer's view on having term limits for senators.

    5:51 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Now we are pivoting to education.

    5:51 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    (No questions thus far about the coronavirus outbreak or Sen. Sanders' recent comments praising literacy rates in Cuba, which have been all over the news this week.)

    5:52 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    There is such an interesting divide among Democrats over education issues, such as charter schools. It doesn't get the attention it deserves.

    5:52 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    CBS' Bill Whitaker asked Bloomberg about charter schools. Good question. That was one of his most cherished crusades -- even though the teachers' unions mostly hate it.

    5:52 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Bloomberg will likely get hammered over his support of charter schools, even though President Obama and his education secretary, Arne Duncan, supported them.

    5:53 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    But the issue of education reform is entirely different with Betsy Devos as President Trump's education secretary.

    5:53 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Warren is speaking out against high-stakes testing, which Obama and Duncan also favored in their Race to the Top competition.

    5:54 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Here's a bit more background on Bernie Sanders' full higher education plan

    5:55 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    5:55 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Sanders emphasizes universal preschool for all. A good example of how Sanders ignores the flak and repeats (and repeats and repeats) the elements of a broadly popular progressive agenda.

    5:55 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Here comes a Twitter question.

    5:56 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    (It's about how to boost affordable housing and education access for minimum wage workers)

    5:56 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    I'm curious to whether any of the candidates will mention national rent control. Affordable housing is my number one concern as an Angeleno and Californian.

    5:57 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Annabella, I don't know if I've heard any of the candidates talk about rent control at the national level though obviously we are having lots of discussions about it in California.

    5:58 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Bloomberg is doing alot better than last week, more prepared.

    5:58 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg just paved a whole runway for a deadpan joke about how poorly he did in the last debate and it crashed and burned fairly dramatically.

    5:59 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    He just joked that he was surprised that anyone of his fellow "contestants" bothered to show up given how well he performed during last week's debate. I think he was joking.

    6:00 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    I hope he was joking.

    6:00 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Yep. Bloomberg is doing better ... but he needs about six more weeks to get comfortable in the format, by which time the race will be over

    6:00 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Many Super Tuesday voters started voting eons ago and are long gone for this, Doyle.

    6:01 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    True that.

    6:01 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    (relative eons, in campaign years, which are even worse than dog years)

    6:01 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I'm surprised Biden didn't mention education of black people to reduce inequality.

    6:01 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Steyer again goes to a place that most of the field has cozied up to, but which has been afraid of committing to: reparations for slavery. (Except for long-gone longshot Marianne Williamson.)

    6:02 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Our reporter Tyrone Beason wrote about the role of reparations in the 2020 race. You can read that story here

    6:03 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    6:03 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Biden's performance tonight has impressed Temple Burris, an insurance agent from North Charleston who's watching from here. She likes that he "sticks to the facts" in what's a raucous debate.

    6:03 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Very important issue here: access to rural healthcare, which is a growing crisis in America.

    6:04 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Klobuchar is asked about the lack of healthcare in rural areas. That's true of not only physical healthcare but also mental healthcare, an issue I recently explored in an article about the growing number of suicides among farmers in Iowa.

    6:05 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter
    6:05 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    There are not enough doctors in rural areas. Many don't have doctors. I am so happy that Amy is discussing the incentives for medical school to be paid for if they serve in rural areas.

    6:05 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    Big issue here in rural South Carolina, Matt. People have complained to me about clinics closing, not just access to affordable health insurance.

    6:05 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    One theory currently circulating on Twitter tonight about why this crowd seems warmer to Mike Bloomberg: WCSC-TV in Charleston, S.C., reports that some tickets to tonight's debate cost $1,750 to $3,200 each.

    6:06 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Mike Bloomberg makes a very New York-specific joke about how it wouldn't be appropriate to have "naked cowboys in every city" when asked if he would pursue some of his more liberal policies as mayor, like a ban on large sodas. The crowd didn't quite get it.

    6:08 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    And Sanders mentioned affordable dental care -- an important and neglected issue

    6:08 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg now criticizing Trump for cutting back on pandemic response as the coronavirus spread. "People are very worried and they should be."

    6:08 PM
  • Tyrone Beason Tyrone Beason Politics reporter

    There is very little enthusiasm for Bloomberg here at the watch party in North Charleston.

    6:08 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I am so happy that Biden wants to put more funding into Alzheimer's! He went up on my favored list

    6:09 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    During that response Sally is talking about, Biden talked about creating a DARPA to innovate in healthcare.

    6:10 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    The conversation has pivoted to legalizing marijuana and expunging criminal records.

    6:10 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    I am very much in favor of expunging people's marijuana convictions. It's awful for them to still be in prison while others are currently making millions in the marijuana market.

    6:11 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "We should not make this a criminal criminal thing for a small amount; for dealers, yes," Bloomberg says of marijuana legalization, which Sanders and Klobuchar were mentioned as supporting.

    6:11 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Until we know the science, it's nonsensical to push ahead," Bloomberg said.

    6:12 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    There has been a lot of research on cannabinoids, so i do not understand why Bloomberg says there is not enough research.

    6:12 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    ...and we're at another commercial break!

    6:13 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Our Los Angeles Times 2020 team has you covered with key dates for the rest of this election cycle. If you have an Apple or Android device, you're in luck -- we have calendar integrations for both

    6:13 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    6:13 PM
  • Adriana Lacy Adriana Lacy Audience engagement editor

    Do you have any questions about the upcoming California primary? Leave them for our political reporters here:

    6:14 PM
  • Adriana Lacy Adriana Lacy Audience engagement editor
    6:14 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    We're back from the commercial break with a question about bringing home troops from the Middle East.

    6:18 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Halftime scorecard: Bernie strong, Biden strong when he remembers to get in, Warren jabbing, and Bloomberg slowly finding his footing. Buttigieg, Klobuchar, Steyer also present.

    6:19 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "You want to cut it back as much as you can," Bloomberg says, but he would not withdraw all troops from the Middle East.

    6:20 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Apart from some lurching jokes, Bloomberg does look a bit more lively this debate.

    6:21 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Also: those Bloomberg ads during the commercial break. He's everywhere.

    6:21 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I agree with Bloomberg. It's a dangerous world and we need to leave some troops in Afghanistan to keep peace.

    6:21 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Bloomberg does have a level of foreign policy experience because of his experience with 9/11 that most mayors would not have.

    6:22 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Coronavirus!

    6:23 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I think that it is surprising that people don't realize how much Bloomberg did after 9-11 as Giuliani has taken a lot of credit, but he was only mayor for three months after 9-11.

    6:23 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    I'm surprised we haven't seen more discussion of coronavirus -- given what we heard from the CDC today and what's happened to the stock market the last two days.

    6:24 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Coronavirus is a complex policy issues that touches a lot of areas -- border control, healthcare, federal management. "I'm not going to give my website right now, I'm going to give the CDC's website," Klobuchar says in an unusual direct appeal to the audience to pay attention to coronavirus.

    6:24 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    For anyone who thought all the non-Bernie candidates would spend the evening tearing a strip off Bernie Sanders: They didn't. For anyone who thought the non-Bloomberg candidates would spend the evening attacking Bloomberg: They didn't do that, either. None of the candidates has acted strategically to change the direction of the race.

    6:25 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    What would a Biden administration do with coronavirus? "What we did with Ebola," Biden says of the 2014 outbreak that the Obama administration successfully helped limit. But unfortunately for everyone, this coronavirus has been much more transmissable and harder to track than Ebola, and the outlook looks increasingly worse that it can be contained.

    6:26 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bernie Sanders is mocking "this great scientist in the White House," Trump, for the president's extremely rosy predictions that coronavirus will not be a threat to the U.S.

    6:26 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Someone just coughed into a microphone in the middle of Sanders' spiel on coronavirus, which was a horrifying little sound effect.

    6:27 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    I am growing increasingly worried about the U.S. response to coronavirus. It really highlights the erosion of our cooperation with the rest of the world, as well as how little Trump has invested in public health.

    6:28 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    U.S. should make "a fuss, I suppose," about human rights violations in China, says Bloomberg, who has been accused of having chummy relationships to the authoritarian government in China as part of his business empire.

    6:28 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg says he would not allow China to build critical infrastructure for the U.S.

    6:29 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Biden coming in pretty hot, criticizing Xi Jingping for the mass detention of Muslim Uighurs in China.

    6:29 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Mayor Bloomberg has been doing business with China for a long time, and he is the only one on the stage who has not released his taxes," Warren says. "It is not enough to say just trust me on this."

    6:30 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Bloomberg again says that his tax returns are so massive that it will take them weeks to release.

    6:30 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Last week Bloomberg said it would take a couple of weeks to get his tax returns to us, but now he says another couple of weeks?

    6:31 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "I released my tax returns, that was easy to do," says Steyer, another billionaire (though a much lesser billionaire than Bloomberg, who is a big mountain of a billionaire).

    6:31 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Steyer says he released his tax returns, and that it's not difficult to do. That is not entirely true. He omitted significant information.

    6:32 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter
    6:32 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Really? Really?" Sanders says when an audience member boos when he says that Cuba raised literacy rates after the communist revolution.

    6:33 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Having covered him for a while, I can tell you that you will not see Sanders apologize for much of anything, especially when it comes to social welfare.

    6:33 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I think Pete bringing attention back to Sanders is a good strategy, and I don't know why the others aren't doing that.

    6:35 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Buttigieg's argument that Sanders' policies represent a return to the 1960s instead of moving forward is a policy dispute but it also allows him to subtly raise the age gap between many of the candidates on the stage.

    6:37 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    This is arguably Sanders' strength as a, well, radical candidate: when other candidates would love to talk about how crazy it is, he will always come back to healthcare, healthcare, healthcare. It's an issue that sticks with voters who are not paying that close of attention to these debates, which is something I saw when I was interviewing workers in Nevada last week who wanted to support Sanders even though their own union was telling them not to.

    6:37 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    To that point: Bernie Sanders says his favorability ratings is the highest in the Democratic field. Which is true, in survey after survey. Something he's doing has been getting through.

    6:38 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I'm concerned about Bernie's performance in Florida against Trump, with all the Cubans living there against Castro.

    6:38 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    That is a very valid concern, Sally; Democrats in southern Florida denounced Sanders this week for his soft-edged remarks on Cuba.

    6:38 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    The conversation now turns to election interference

    6:38 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Seema. Regarding election interference, didn't Sanders vote against Russian sanctions, like Magnitsky?

    6:39 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Yes, Sanders did vote against Russian and Iranian sanctions in 2017, saying that while he believed people who interfere with our elections should be punished but he feared the new sanctions would harm the Iran nuclear deal.

    6:41 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "It's something that we would take into consideration," Sanders says, dodging a question on whether he would move America's embassy in Israel back to Tel Aviv, which was a move by Trump that pleased Israelis and angered Palestinians.

    6:42 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    A waffle from Bernie! Q: Would you move the embassy out of Jerusalem? A: "That is something we would take into consideration."

    6:42 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "You can't move the embassy back," Bloomberg says, though he laments that the U.S. did not extract a concession from the Israeli government for the move, which the Trump administration did not.

    6:43 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "It is not ours to do," Warren says of the embassy, saying the "parties" involved should decide what their capitals are.

    6:44 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Something noticeably missing from this debate: hostile crossfire between Klobuchar and Buttigieg, whose dislike of each other has become palpable in these debates.

    6:45 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    So true, Matt. I think it was especially tense last time because they were right next to each other. And also Buttigieg may have decided he needs to try to pick someone else off to once again ascend in the moderate lane.

    6:46 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Amy seems shaky on foreign affairs after her faux pas not remembering the name of the president of Mexico.

    6:47 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Why am I stopping? No one else stops," Biden says of his time expiring (which he has diligently adhered to more than any other candidate on this stage in past debates). "My Catholic training. ... Gentlemen don't get very well treated up here."

    6:48 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Who had debates over the intricacies of European social democracy on their debate scorecards?

    6:49 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    Pete really digressed away from the question about Syria to medicare for all, although his knowledge on Syria is impressive

    6:50 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    I agree with Warren that we cannot depend on our military to solve humanitarian crises and I would've liked to hear more of her answer.

    6:50 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    We're at another commercial break

    6:51 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor

    Interested in candidates' policy stances? You can read about them all here

    6:51 PM
  • Adrienne Shih Adrienne Shih Audience engagement editor
    6:51 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Here's the final question to all the candidates: What's the biggest misconception about you, and outside of politics, what is your personal motto/belief/favorite hope?

    6:56 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Steyer says the misconception is that he's defined by money, and he promises to tell the truth.

    6:56 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    They didn't let Steyer finish, but Amy is still talking!

    6:57 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Klobuchar says biggest misconception about her is that "I'm boring." and she recalls mentor late Paul Wellstone's words about politics being about improving people's lives.

    6:57 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Biden: "Everyone's entitled to dignity, no matter what."

    6:57 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    One of our subscribers just put her hand on her head and shook it over Klobuchar's answer.

    6:58 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Biden says of the biggest misconception about him: "I have more hair than I think I do."

    6:58 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Sanders says biggest misconception about him is that his ideas are radical. "They're not." The motto is from Nelson Mandela: "Everything is impossible until it happens."

    6:59 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I agree that Bernie's ideas are not that radical, what is radical is that he thinks the whole Democratic establishment doesn't agree with his basic ideas.

    6:59 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Extra points to Bernie for quoting Nelson Mandela

    6:59 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Warren says a misconception about her is that she doesn't eat very much, "in fact I eat all the time."

    6:59 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    Warren says her motto is Matthew 25 from the Bible, which she rattled off on the stage.

    7:00 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    What is Mathew 25?

    7:01 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me."

    7:01 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    Yep, maybe the first verbatim quote from the New Testament in these debates

    7:01 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Buttigieg says biggest misconception about him is that he's not passionate. Tries to live by the teachings that say if you were to be a leader first you must be a servant and the Golden Rule.

    7:01 PM
  • Matt Pearce Matt Pearce Politics reporter

    King James version.

    7:01 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Bloomberg says misconception about him is that he's 6 feet tall.

    7:02 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    So Sally and Annabella, what did you think of tonight's debate? Did it change your perception of any of the candidates?

    7:03 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    I felt that this debate was a lot less intense than the previous one, but I did appreciate including more questions on foreign policy. Once again, Warren and Sanders stood out for me the most and I continue to believe they hold the best chance to take on Trump. I liked that Sanders fought against the accusation that his agenda is "too radical." Warren shined the most for me when she discussed education reform and when she attacked Bloomberg for his history of sexism.

    7:11 PM
  • Annabella Abrao Annabella Abrao L.A. Times subscriber

    I do wish they had asked the candidates questions on climate change and the Supreme Court, particularly considering Trump's recent comments on Justices Ginsburg and Sotomayor and Justice Sotomayor's recent dissent.

    7:11 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    The debate was frustrating for me. My main issue is who can beat Trump, and the debate left me thinking that no one can beat Trump. I think that Steyer has the clearest perspective of what is wrong and what the priorities are. I think Steyer could beat Trump, but I do not think he can win the primary. Bernie is not my first choice because his campaign, while recruiting and uniting people new to politics, ostracizes the long-term liberal Democratic "establishment." This divisiveness may hurt him in the general election.

    7:12 PM
  • Sally Frautschy Sally Frautschy L.A. Times subscriber

    I was disappointed that my first choice, Warren, did not confront Bernie, but instead focused on attacking Bloomberg. And I am frustrated that Bloomberg coming on the scene has taken away support from the mainstream Democrats, leaving proportionally more support for Bernie, who does not represent most of the Democrats.

    7:12 PM
  • Doyle McManus Doyle McManus Washington Columnist

    My final scorecard: Bernie Sanders took some flak and handled it well. Joe Biden had one of his best debates, but didn't do anything to transform the race. Neither did anyone else. Bloomberg was better than last week, which was a low bar to clear -- but his best moments still come in paid commercials.

    7:13 PM
  • Seema Mehta Seema Mehta Politics reporter

    Well, that's yet another Democratic debate in the books! Follow latimes.com as we cover the South Carolina primary and then the 14 states that vote on Super Tuesday, including California. We have a little respite in debates -- the next one takes place on March 15 in Phoenix. Looking forward to chatting with you all again then!

    7:16 PM