tv WSJ at Large With Gerry Baker FOX Business June 30, 2019 5:30am-6:01am EDT
this weekend sunday on fox news. 10 am eastern. join me every day on fox business start smart with mornings with maria weekdays 8:54 am eastern right here on fox business. i hope you'll join me weekdays bid that does it for now. thank you for joining me this weekend. have a fantastic weekend. gerry: hello, and welcome to the wall street journal at large. 20 candidates, five moderators, four hours, two nights. but was there one winner or one loser? other questions everyone is asking after this week's double-header of democratic presidential primary debate the first of the 2020 election campaign. there we just watched joe biden 's crown slip?
and kamala harris the most dangerous challenger now? what does debate tells about the direction of the democratic party as it gears up to take on president trump next year? we'll discuss this with the finest minds in democratic party politics. but first i want to say is worth noticing there were two very different debates this week. the first and was it was a sober affair.policy heavy as candidates led by elizabeth warren, dug politely into the issues, economy, immigration and healthcare. but at the first was a little like a policy seminar in a classroom for left-wing intellectuals, the second of those was more like a brawl than a student -- the tone, noisy and combative, was set early on. it was a senator from california that immediately seized the opportunity to shine. >> senator harris -- [multiple speakers] >> we will let you all speak. senator harris. >> hey, guys you know what?
america does not want to witness a food fight. they want to know how we will put food on their table. gerry: commentators quickly agreed that senator harris was indeed the winner on thursday. and perhaps the most memorable moment of the past and tonight she went to the front runner, mr. biden in a very personal way over his past statements defending his work with segregationists senators. >> it is hurtful. to hear you talk about the reputations of two united states senators who built their reputations and career on segregation of race in this country. he also worked with them to oppose busing. and there was a little girl in california who is part of the second class to integrate her public school and she was bussed to school every day. that little girl was made. >> a miscarriage ration my position across the board. i did not praise racist, is not true. gerry: the other main
candidates had mixed performances.in such a big field bernie sanders lacked the punch that he had last time when he was challenging hillary clinton. pete buttigieg was neatly penitent over some racial issues involving the police force in south bend where his mayor and in the more policy heavy first night senator elizabeth warren stood out as expected with her command of the issues. what are the parties experts think? with me not to talk about all this, the debate and what the future holds for the democratic party is robert barnett. he has his distinguished political resume doing debate proverb democratic hopeful since jimmy carter's campaign in 1976 but also partner every law firm, williams and connelly. he's joining me now. thank you for being here. >> thank you. they say kamala harris was the winner and joe biden the loser, do you have any reason to differ? >> is only think kamala harris
did an excellent job. she had a leadership moment when she talked about food fights versus food on the table. she had a passionate explanation about her own history in which she believes she is to be complemented and congratulated. i think that those in the 24 hours after the debate, for being as critical as they are of joe biden are making a mistake. joe biden has had decades of service to this country. has been a leader on these issues. when you have got 30, 35 and one poll, 38 percent. even if your little slippage it is still good at a 24 candidate field. i recall 1984. i'm sure that you do too. ronald reagan in the first debate was found wandering up highway 101 in california in the wall street journal, there were an article about his mental state on the front page. but with one memorable line in the second debate, i will not
take advantage of my opponents youth and experience pit he turned it around and was elected. i think we make a mistake jumping to conclusions. this is a distance race, not a sprint. there will be 12 of these and people will be up, people will be down. it was certainly a great night for kamala harris. let's not forget if i may, wednesday, he mentioned elizabeth warren did a wonderful job with her mastery. of policy and her command and her leadership and so, even though it was washed up by thursday, wednesday night is to be remembered. gerry: it does look a little bit -- i take your point, but it does look a little for joe biden he lost the campaign, looks like it kind of peaked on opening day. he's had a number of missteps. this week was not a good one. what does he need to do to get things back on track? >> i think you have many
opportunities to address the issue that he addressed on thursday night. we will see how he addresses them and people make a judgment. again, i am not -- not that you're doing this but it's a big mistake to write off anybody except the kind of unknowns that did not become known at this point. i think there's no question that joe biden will remain in the next debate. the next debate and the next debate. each one of those will be two hours or four hours depending on how many people are left. there's plenty of opportunity for things to change. joe biden, as kamala harris said, in her postdebate interviews, is an admirable public servant. gerry: weaves to part the president did not go off to donald trump as much? they certainly indicated. >> i was surprised. i thought there will be more of that. when you commit to one of these debates, and i did multicandidate debates, anyway did multicandidate debates in 16. he should have to have a strategy and a plan. some people there were completely unknown and really
their only strategy was to get normal repair there were other people who are in lanes and they decided they would try to take up people in their lanes. there are other people who simply would have come i would have thought, more taken it to the president because he wanted them, if they are known, that they have the ability to do that. it is early. i think there will be more of the -- i think i was surprised there wasn't more of it. gerry: and policies. people had well worked out detailed policies whether you like them or not. not so much about values. do you think that is something a party needs to reconsider? >> when i am involved in debate prep i have a lot of rules that i advocate. some are accepted and some are not depending on the willingness of the candidate. one is that is generally best not to mention legislation. and it certainly is best not to mention the section number of
the legislation. there was a bit too much of that. certainly, you have to have plans and i prefer not to call them plans. i prefer to call them policies and ideas and solutions. i think those are generally better words. nothing bad about that but i hope as the debates continue there will be more discussion about what the democrats and the candidates stand for. i was taken by, and i am biased, i am a democrat. frankly, i admit to that. but i was taken by the fact that this was a group of thoughtful, civilized, intelligent people.agree with them or not. and a contrast that for instance, with the 2016 republican debates where there was name-calling, belittling and derangement and i thought there was a big difference. i will make one other point if i may. gerry: yes, quickly. >> i think what i call is the
tableau is important. one person of color and one woman. you had diversity up there. age, race, sex, on and on. i was proud of that. gerry: let me quickly because we have to wrap up. ask you, do you think though that the party -- is a pretty progressive party. a much more progressive party than the democratic seems in the last 30 years or so. as -- is that the right thing? >> you have early primary debates, you have a difficult situation in the following sense. you won't get anywhere if you do not get the nomination. andy will get the nomination unless you get to the activist many of whom are liberal pit on the other hand you have to keep your eye on the ball and realize things that you say will be 32nd commercials in the general. that is a terribly difficult situation to balance. each candidate it does it
different. some do it better than others but the factory mention is a very important one, as we look to long haul. which is november 2020. gerry: thank you, terrific. i have to wrap it there. just ahead with the first debate now behind us, what comes next? i will ask two democratic strategists what they are seeing. seeing. ♪ ♪ here i go again on my own ♪ goin' down the only road i've ever known ♪ ♪ like a-- ♪ drifter i was ♪born to walk alone! you're a drifter? i thought you were kevin's dad. little bit of both. if you ride, you get it.
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hey rick, all good? oh yeah, we're good. we're good. termites never stop trying to get in, we never stop working to keep them out. terminix. defenders of home. gerry: journeyman not to discuss with the race might go from here two democratic strategists, eric -- and max burns. thank you for journey. eric, everyone thinks it kamala harris won and joe biden loss. where do they now go? how does kamala harris build on her success and how does joe biden recovery? >> they want to draw a wedge
and it remains to be seen.if you recall kamala harris has some baggage in her background being a former prosecutor, long before the current progressive wave that became en vogue among the democratic party. they shall continue to hit those notes clearly everyone gave rave reviews of last night that she will lead into the history with a young black girl in california who benefited from some of the policy that joe biden was at least mushy on if not opposed to. gerry: max, that's a good point. support among black voters for joe biden has been really strong. his association with president obama helping him there. is that now vulnerable do you think because the way harris went after him? >> i think he's incredibly vulnerable. i think we saw last night was so good for harris because she did essentially two important things. one is, she can miss the d&c democrats, establishment democrats who may be on the fence about joe biden that maybe it's time to switch.
the second is, she showed her strength and prosecuting a case in a politician and 40 seconds, joe biden was starting to struggle. and it was a moment if you candidates get in their career. it was great to see. gerry: they got most of the attention. who else, eric, do you think is kind of standing? it was 20 candidates, two debates. most did not get a look and. who is still standing? >> i think sanders reaffirmed his support in position and reminder he is one that brought the party where it is today. even if time is passing him by for a number of factors including some self conflicted political wounds along the way. i think mayor pete, actually did pretty well. gerry: i think he handled the issue of the police department in south bend -- >> i think we will see. he recognizes his base is white moderates in the midwest. i think i love the party particular the white progressives, white moderates,
have not been able to fully reckon with the past and with the current issues facing communities of color. especially with regards to policing. gerry: so then people talk about the top five still intact. did anyone break in from outside into the top tier? >> i think you will not see a ton of movement at the moment. dad is already sort of in a weakened position is going to struggle a bit more. bernie i was surprised at how okay but not exceptional his night was. things that were very exciting and new in 2016 are being said by better communicators like elizabeth warren, helene castro and bernie sanders is almost getting lost in this trend that he revitalized. gerry: max mentions castro, -- a strong candidate most people think that. is there anyone else now, how quickly will we whittle the field down to a more manageable number? >> i think we have a number of candidates that will have their number in the sun.
i think julian castro will have that sooner rather than later. he stands out as a young electric candidate and a primary wage will be an issue whether it should be or not. i would also keep an eye out on jay inslee. the governor. he's the only one that i think is leaning into his executive experience. >> and really breaks the gender. >> and the activists will continue to make that a prime issue.if not right now then it will be come the fall. gerry: thank you both. we will be
is will take on president trump? >> we think it will be a progressive candidate that gets through by the cheers and the boos in the room. i think put -- pete buttigieg, he was ready for the night. i think the american people are wanting some of that is humble. so when i can admit they when they make a mistake. gerry: he is not particularly very well with the progressives. in some respects he seen as not quite progressive enough.>> i think a lot of people say midwestern mayor and they start to think maybe he goes down the middle of the path of it. but mayor peter has actually proposed very progressive policies on the environment, criminal justice reform, marijuana policy. in many ways he's the best blend of things because he gives you this midwestern local government experience with an unapologetically progressive agenda behind it.
gerry: erika, is a sin unapologetically left-wing democratic party now? >> i think moderation is pretty much dead. at least for the primaries. depending where you're standing progressives are either coming to save you or kill you. i do think that to build off of some of that, it is going to be critical as voters, especially prime voters tune in more and we have a candidate who can really back up these platforms. which are easy to say but not so easy to explain. that is why think a candidate like elizabeth warren has an advantage. she is on the ability to blend this policy and execution and empathy in a really effective message. whether or not it is enough, we will see. gerry: president trump will of the spirit progressive left-wing party. it will be socialism versus capitalism. >> a funny thing is that i hear people say not to move left because it will make them unelectable. after electing most left-wing
candidate of the country. gerry: i take the point that there are some populist things of the present stands for things like trade. not necessarily conservative right wing policies. i just wonder, is a country ready to embrace someone who is going to embrace a really progressive agenda?>> i think we often make a mistake before general election comes up as to what issues your positions are too far left or two for right for electric.i think we learned in 2016, the electorate was further along on some of the issues then we, the pundits were. i think issues like health care for undocumented. i think it is presented in an empathetic way as sort of i think you'll see that providing healthcare to them is not really so controversial. gerry: max, the final word. what is the final word? >> i think a message resonates with seniors that the president
is losing. elizabeth warren is tied with him in texas. they go in the community and point out how donald trump is making you poorer, is the path to the white house. gerry: even with the counter that looks pretty strong. lowest unemployment rate in 50 years. median wages are rising. do think that is a powerful message? >> yes, the economy is doing extraordinary well if you're a massive corporation have a membership at mar-a-lago. but if you are in coal country are still waiting for those jobs that donald trump promise. if you're in iowa he is not worried about your soybeans are your corn for starting a trade war that's costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars. gerry: eric, your final word. it is at the right economic message? >> yes, i think donald trump is all talk and no action.gerry: thank you both, eric soufer and max burns. coming up i will look if american voters are indeed ready to go with the direction the democratic party
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democratic race continues to be a struggle between those on the left of the party who want a more radical approach to taxes, spending, race and other issues. and those in the center the think the way to beat president trump is with a more moderate line.but the evidence this week is that the very meaning of the terms left and right has been redefined. the center of gravity in the party has clearly shifted to the left. a most revealing moment this week was not processed center
harris take of vice president joe biden. it came when they talked about immigration. >> raise your hand if your government plan would provide coverage for undocumented immigrants. [applause] gerry: everything a democrat on the stage, left, right and center favored extending publicly funded healthcare benefits to people who do not even have a legal right to live in this country. you can argue the merits of this from a legal or humanitarian perspective but consider this. when he traduced obamacare legislation in 2009, president barack obama excluded illegal immigrants from eligibility of benefits. in less than a decade, everything a democrat on that stage at least, feels obamacare did not go far enough in more needs to be done to make life more comfortable for illegal immigrants. that seems to be where the democratic party is. it remains to be seen and we will see next year if it is also where the country is.
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