Episode 38

Starting Gate Debates, Part 2

July 24th, 2019

1 hr 3 mins 40 secs

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About this Episode

We're back for the second night of the Democratic Debates. This one features some heavyweights - Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg.

We've chosen to pick one segment from each issue/topic to analyze how the different candidates responded, and persuaded, one another and the audience. Listen to this episode to find out:

  • How transitional phrases are used by multiple candidates to not answer questions, and the exact words candidates are using to transition to a new topic
  • How Barack Obama's campaign messaging has been hijacked by Bernie Sanders to illustrate the difference between him and other candidates
  • The moment when Bernie gets caught off-guard and accidentally says the whole truth
  • The ways that moderators were trying to create a pit fight between moderate and progressive candidates, and why they picked certain candidates to go against each other
  • Why Kamala Harris jumps in when she did on the contentious questions about race and ethnicity, and what we should know about this from a persuasion standpoint
  • How candidates broaden their messaging by first diverting to values and then swinging back to policy points
  • The rhetorical technique of antimeria and which 2020 candidate won the "rhetoric award" for this debate
  • Necessity vs. possibility languaging and how candidates might be painting themselves into a corner
  • How Kamala Harris changes scope on a moderator and launches an implied threat
  • Eric Swalwell's attacks on Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg and why it makes sense to examine them more closely
  • The illogical but persuasively sound argument that one candidate made while on the debate stage that caused roaring applause
  • And much more!

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Ten candidates: Joe Biden, Sanders,Kamala Harris, Pete Buttigieg, Kirsten Gillibrand, Michael Bennet, Marianne Williamson, Eric Swalwell, Andrew Yang, John Hickenlooper

(Theme Music: "Night Owl" by Broke For Free from Free Music Archive, CC BY 3.0)

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You can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook!

(Theme Music: "Night Owl" by Broke For Free from Free Music Archive, CC BY 3.0)

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