Takeaways from the First Democratic Presidential Debates

Screenshot from the MSNBC telecast of the first Democratic presidential debates. 

That’s a wrap for the first Democratic presidential primary debates! On June 26 and June 27, Democratic presidential hopefuls took the stage to make their priorities clear and, we were all ears. We tuned in to find out what the candidates had to say about issues that are critical to kids. It’s understandable that with 24 candidates running, it may be hard to keep track of who is saying what. That’s why we did the work for you! Here’s what the candidates had to say about a few key issues. 

Early Childhood Education

 “We have to transform education. We’ll provide universal pre-k, triple Title I funding, raise teacher pay, double the number of mental health professionals in our schools and eliminate disparities between rich and poor schools.” – Joe Biden

“I believe that education is the future for this country.” – Bernie Sanders

“It matters that we have someone as president who [sees] the wasted potential in children denied pre-k, and give it to them.” – Bill de Blasio

When asked what issue the candidates would prioritize if elected into office, Kirsten Gillibrand said “Passing a family bill of rights that includes a national paid leave plan, universal Pre-K, affordable daycare and making sure that women and families can thrive in the workplace no matter who they are.”

U.S.-Mexico Border Crisis

“Immigrants do not diminish America, they are America.” – Amy Klobuchar

“I will release children from cages. I will get rid of the private detention centers. I will ensure that the president of the United States uses this microphone in a way that reflects the values of this country – not lock up children and separate them from their parents.” – Kamala Harris

“The first thing we have to do is recognize the humanitarian crisis on the border for what it is and make sure there are the sufficient facilities in place so that women and children are not separated from their families.” – John Hickenlooper

Hope for the Future

“This is our moment and the generations that follow are counting on us to meet it.” – Beto O’ Rourke

“It’s time for us to make families come first.” – Elizabeth Warren

“It’s time to pass the torch to a new generation of Americans.” – Eric Swalwell

“We need to build a new era of American democracy and American opportunity…it’s what our kids deserve.” – Michael Bennett

Use your voice to urge presidential candidates to prioritize kids!