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People at a Watch Party in Orlando Say It’s Still Unclear Who They’d Send to Washington


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No clear winner at the end of the first Democratic debates. Photo: NPR News

No clear winner at the end of the first Democratic debates. Photo: NPR News


About forty people in Orlando gathered for a watch party last night for the first Democratic debates. 

There was an unofficial poll outside the downtown Orlando club Savoy where people placed bingo chips in mason jars labeled with candidate’s names. 

It illustrated what people inside the watch room were discussing among themselves during breaks in coverage-that no one candidate had stood out among the ten on the stage. 

But watch party participant Sammy Conde said there were some clear leaders. 

They said these included Julian Castro who spoke about providing healthcare to underrepresented patient populations.

“Julian Castro really got me excited when he talked about trans inclusion on issues of reproductive health. Because it’s something that’s ignored by a lot of politicians because it’s just something that they don’t see.”

Conde says other candidates like Elizabeth Warren and Bill De Blasio also stood out because of their support for universal healthcare and limited lobbying power for corporations.

Fellow debate watcher Eric Castro said his top candidates at the end of these first debates were Julian Castro and Cory Booker because of their support for decriminalizing certain types of immigration. 

“Me as an immigrant. I’m an actual immigrant. My family. Like I feel related about it. I know it’s also very difficult for people if they’re not immigrants which I understand is not the same. But I think it’s still a really big deal. It’s a really big deal happening in South America and Central America. So it’s eventually going to affect everything.”

Ten more candidates will face off in the second night of debates this evening. 

If you’d like to listen to the story, please click on the clip above.


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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »

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