MIAMI, Fla. (ABC News) — We’re just hours away from the first debate of this presidential campaign season.
The crowded field of Democrats hoping to eventually win their party’s nomination — gathering in Miami, where over the course of the next two nights they will make their case to millions of Americans.
Final walk-throughs and preps underway as ten democratic candidates prepare to take this stage in Miami for the first of a two-night debate.
“If you’re a lesser known candidate, you have to make some kind of mark in this debate. Because it will be a predicate for fundraising and media attention.”
The two hour-long face-off between presidential hopefuls — will be broken into five segments — each candidate given a minute to answer questions and 30 seconds for follow-ups.
A rapid-fire opportunity for many of these candidates — to introduce themselves to voters.
“My name id is not what is for some other candidates beginning with tonight as my name ID goes up, polls will go up.”
Immigration is expected to be a major focus with many of the candidates now visiting or planning to visit a private for-profit South Florida Detention Facility, where migrant children are being held.
“We do not lock people up for political ends which is what the president of united states is doing.”
Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren — has the highest poll numbers of this group.
“She has a chance to dominate.”
And will be in the center of this stage- along with former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke.
Also, hoping to stand out tonight in this crowded field: New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio, Former Maryland Congressman John Delany, Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard, Washington Governor Jay Inslee…
“I’m happy to draw the contrast.”
And Minnesota Senator Amy Klobochar.
To keep the pace moving there will be no opening comments and each candidate will get just 45 seconds for closing statements.
And then – 10 more candidates – including Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders will take this stage Thursday for night two of this debate.
(This story was originally published on June 26, 2019)